Employee wrongly snared in e-mail scandal to receive $25,000 — Business Management Daily: Free Reports on Human Resources, Employment Law, Office Management, Office Communication, Office Technology and Small Business Tax Business Management Daily

Employee wrongly snared in e-mail scandal to receive $25,000

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The City of New York has agreed to pay $25,000 to William Hallowell, a former library assistant at Riverdale Country School in the Bronx, for arresting him following an e-mail mix-up at work.

In April 2007, Hallowell e-mailed a resignation to Robin Bernsen, the library director. Some time later, Bernsen e-mailed Hallowell to request return of a library key, but inadvertently sent it to the wrong e-mail address. In response, she received a bizarre, rambling e-mail offering, among other things, to spank her with a copy of “Finigan’s [sic] Wake.” Because there was also mention of a gun, Bernsen contacted police, who hauled Hallowell off in handcuffs and held him for more than 30 hours.

It took Hallowell three months to get the charges dropped, despite “a mountain of evidence” that he did not send the e-mail—not the least of which is the fact that Hallowell knows how to spell “Finnegan.”

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