A manager claims he is a “cop” and threatens workers with “police investigations into backgrounds.” Is this legal?

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A manager claims he is a “cop” and threatens workers with “police investigations into backgrounds.” Is this legal?

He goes beyond simple background checks and into threats of outside employment being at risk because “(he’s) a cop! (He) can make it difficult.” He has made intimidating (proven false) accusations and said “the police will CONTINUE to investigate.” These threats are very personal. He calls workers several times a day to gossip about other workers. Some employees fear for their physical safety. As this is the owner’s family, no effort has been made to stop such behavior. The fact is he was a cop a few years ago, but I don’t believe he still is! I, too, am a manager. What recourse do we have?

Asked on June 3, 2009 under Employment Labor Law, Illinois

Answers:

J.M.A., Member in Good Standing of the Connecticut Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

I am a lawyer in CT and often advise people in your hostile work situation.  what you need to to to protect yourself is to write a letter to upper management complaining out this person's behavior and conduct.  this will hopefully trigger a response from someone to address the problem.  it will also give you paper the file in the event that you are not responded to timely and later want to make a claim against the company - i.e. the lette places them on notice and their failure to correct the problem may make them liable to you for damages shoudl you file some type of claim (i.e. negligent infliction of emotional distress). 


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