Disturbing Things Employers Discovered While Conducting Background Checks

Disturbing Things Employers Discovered While Conducting Background Checks



The things you can learn about someone... limitless and surprising, no?

These employers are here to weigh in.


I was working at a family fun center as the accountant. I did all the payroll and was listed at the contact person with the state for any employee questions. I get a call that went something like this.

Ted - Hi, my name is Ted and I'm calling to see if you employ Sally?

Me- Yes, she just started here last week.

T- I'm Sally's parole officer. I wanted to check and see if she will be dealing with any children at her work?

Me- Yes, this is a family fun center that is full of kids. Is there a problem?

T- Yea, you need to send her home right now. She is not allowed to work anywhere with kids. Did you do a background check on her?

Me- I'll check with HR but we normally do run a background check.

T- I will contact her, but please send her home and do not let her return.

Me- ok. Thank you.

End of convo. I do a quick google search and pull up her police record. Turns out she and her boyfriend had a kid together but we're both addicted to drugs. To get the baby to stop crying they would put a bag over the baby's head and make it pass out. One night they left it over the baby's head too long and it stopped breathing. She did a few years in jail and had just recently been paroled I lost it on our HR person because I found out he had stopped submitting background checks to the company we used even though we were still paying them the monthly fee.




I did a background check for one guy, and I found out that he had lied about every single job that he had. Going one job back, he claimed that he was a manager at a shoe store that went out of business. I was unable to verify that, because the shoe store went out of business. Then he said that he was in the military for four years as a communication specialist. I found that he was in the army for three months, but got an honorable discharge because he couldn't make it through Boot Camp. He claimed before that he was the manager of the evening shift at a chicken plant, turns out that he was a janitor for only a few months before he was fired for job performance. He claimed he was a manager of a hotel before that, and it turned out that his mother was actually the night manager, and she was fired because she kept bringing her kid to work.

I tried to do the math, and I realized that if everything in the background check was true, that the applicant probably also lied about his age, and had to be a lot younger than he claimed to be. He said he was in his late 20s, but I bet he was no older than 20 or 21.



Guy applied for a driver position with one of our Senior Care affiliates (take elderly people on errands and to appointments, deliver meals, take clients to the center where they can hang out, etc.) Not one, not two, but TEN counts of elder abuse, with a side of attempted murder and theft. Rescinded that offer real damn quick.




Did a background check on a guy who was applying to work at one of our K-8 schools. His report came back with a whole bunch of petty crimes listed, as well as an attempted murder conviction that he spent a bunch of years in prison for.

Guy was absolutely outraged and insisted that none of the convictions were actually his "other than the attempted murder one." No matter how many times I told him that the attempted murder conviction alone disqualified him from employment, he kept insisting that he should be employable because "only one of the convictions was actually his."

Felt bad for the guy because I'm sure it's hard to find a job with such a thing on your record, but there's absolutely no way we would've hired him to work with elementary schoolers.

I also did the background checks for school volunteers (who were much more likely to have major criminal offenses on their records than candidates for employment), so there were all sorts of awful things I found ... murder, child abuse, rape, child molestation, etc. For some reason, though, that one still sticks in my mind as one as the most disturbing, I think because he absolutely could not comprehend why attempted murder was any worse than driving on a suspended license.



Lovely personable chap, tired of working nights. Looking for day job so he could spend more time with his family. Check: multiple domestic violence charges.

Soft-spoken, polite, early 20's. Admitted gap in work history due to three years in prison for violating parole for a little trouble he was in as a juvenile. Check: little trouble = murder.

Charismatic, enthusiatic, employed as a personal chef, but work had not been steady. Looking for something long term. Check: had trial date scheduled for the following week on two attempted murder charges. Would guess something long term likely.


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