Tag Archives: work

WHO ARE YOU REALLY?

This week a coworker of mine was sentenced to 3 years in prison, 32 years suspended. And a year probation. He had been under house arrest for almost a year, after spending months in the county jail.

The charges are possessing and distributing child pornography.

Over a year ago, in February 2017, police came to our office building, went into his office ( 2 doors down from mine),and 15 minutes later, escorted him out. I was in his office when the state police showed up, arranging a meeting we were going to have that afternoon. I was asked, with merely a look and a nod from one of the officers to leave. I did without needing to be told twice. They all drove away and that was the last we saw of him.

The police did return the following day and seize his computer from his office. Apparently when they had gone to his home with him, they found his home computer, phone and a camera set up in the living room to watch kids play outside and record them. Evidently, they needed all the devices he had access to.

I cannot describe the disbelief on everyone’s faces. And, of course, there were the questions and rumors flying around.

No one had any idea. Initially we thought they came and got him because his elderly mother must have fallen ill or, maybe fell down. Or maybe his alcoholic sister had crashed and killed herself or someone. None of these are good reasons, but child porn was the absolute last thing on our minds.

The next day, he was fired. Still no explanation to anyone.
We all started searching online . Took a bit of time, but found out he had over 20 child pornography charges.

Yes, he was now in the local county jail in the county he had been living in. He pleaded guilty to all charges. In the end, half were dropped. Apparently, he had been perusing child porn sites and the police were doing a sting in the area. Lo and behold, they traced his IP address and found him.

My heart went out to his Mom and sister. He was basically their caretaker. Visiting when he could and helping around the house . His mom was 86 at the time, and now in 100% denial. Claiming false charges, he was set up, I am sure he only looked once, and on and on. It was sad and we needed to give her time to absorb the shock. I cannot imagine her grief then, and even more so now with his sentencing.

A few of us who were closer to him then the rest of the office, were asked by his mother, for a character reference letter for the courts. I agonized over this. His moral character was in the gutter at this point in my opinion, but I agonized because I wanted to do it for his mother. She was in pain and thought this would help him. But I couldn’t. I could not write what a great guy he was and how helpful and caring he was. Not when he is looking at child porn and videotaping children. One person did, but I could not agree to it.
.

I, as well as others who considered him a friend, felt so betrayed. And more so duped. A man who we thought of as a good guy. A man who always offered to help when someone asked. We chatted many hours over the course of the 20 years I knew him as a friend and co-worker.
But, a man who, in his own words, was attracted to young girls between 6-12.
Moved to a family oriented community. A man in his 50’s and never married or in a serious relationship. Never dated. Good with kids. Kids called him Uncle. A man who joined a community theater. All individually, not bad things. But now that we know his “other side” it all made sense.

Hiding a complete side of your self takes talent, or is it manipulation? To never suspect or even get an inkling of any kind to me is astonishing. You ask yourself, how could I not know? How could I have not seen signs? But when you are not looking, you won’t see them. And why would you be looking? People always said he was a bit odd. How odd? Just someone who would be nice quite often, and then suddenly stop speaking to you with no explanation. Someone who offered to help, yet kept to himself. But really, does that translate to the crimes he committed?

Clearly, there are other sides to everyone. You see people at work, in their work mode, and work behavior. They get home and shed the work persona and become, mom, or dad, or roommate. But do you ever wonder what other personas they become when work person is done for the day? I didn’t, but I sure do now.

Gone, But Not Forgotten

Here are 2 conversations that can make your head spin. I try to think that when i get the initial “Hi” that it is legit, and that I am going to chat with someone.  Though, the first started with “My Dear”,  I was going to give it a minute , but I didn’t really need that much time. I think it was 45 seconds. Only took 2 lines to disappear.

His message: “My dear i am Doing well my dear. my name is XXX and you and what do you do ?”

My answer: “I am a librarian, you? How come your profile says you are Asian and 7 feet tall?”

His answer: (yes that would be blank ) and his profile really said that. Thought maybe he was a phenom and a basketball player.

Here is one from someone who clearly needs to study geography and job descriptions.

We both said “Hi”. What a start. The usual beginnings. “How are you?” I said “oh I am good. Tiring day, and you?” He responded that he was good too.

I decided to move this along so I asked. “what area do you live in and work in?” He answered “what have you been doing today??” I told him I worked and went to the dentist. He said “Nice”. So, being polite, I said, “what did you do?” His response:”I have been on computer for the day.” So I asked for work and he said no, he wasn’t feeling well.

“What do you do for work?”, I asked him trying to move this forward.

He says “Contraction” I knew this wasnt a typo.  “huh? what is that?” He now says “Construction and i use to build roads,houses,bridges and many more.”  I am thinking many more what? Many more things? many more bridges?”  Of course, now I cant leave it alone. A normal person would have cut it off then, but I had to see where this went.

I then asked “use to? what is it now then?”

This is what he  answered. “what do you do too??” I tell him “librarian.”

He comes back with “Tell me more about you.”

I am getting  annoyed now that he has pretty much avoided every question. So my answer is “well it seems you haven’t answered much for me. I asked what area you live and work. You said you used to do this construction but what now?”

Here is what i got: “I live in Colombia and works in here”

Here I go: “I dont understand what you are saying. Maryland?”( I actually looked up Colombia on Google becasue I wanted to be sure how Columbia, Maryland was spelled, and I confirmed it was with a U ,not an O.)  “and work ??”

Him:” I live in Colombia and works in the state.”

Me: “I am sorry you are not being clear.” Really, sometimes I wish I can leave these things alone, but I just cant. It is now a runaway train.

Me: “South America? Maryland?”

Him: “Do you have a cell phone we can talk on??”

Wrong answer ,hon.  Me :”I prefer this for now. so can you clear any of this up for me?”

Him: “what??” he is just shocked that I would be asking this

So I try again, as clear as I can be: “where you are from? city and state?  country? what you do for work and where? you havent answered anything really.”

Him: “I was Born and raised in Germany But lived in DC for 20 years now in Colombia…I work as a construction manger in Colombia.”

Me: Maryland?

Him:”no South America”

Here I go: “you see i have had many men tell me they are from Germany, live in another country but put DC on here. And the fact that you havent answered it makes me think you are one of these people.” There I said it!

Him: “Whose of who???” My network was fucking up.what do you want me to tell you now?”

Me: “I really wanted to you answer the only question I have asked . Colombia ? where?”

Him: “Mestizo Colombian”

I looked this up. Is that an area in in Colombia? Nope. Me: “Sorry that is not a place. It is a type of people.”

Him: brb

Yep Gone.