Hiring new employees is daunting for any business. Of course your concerns must fall upon whether the potential hire possesses the necessary skills and conducive personality to succeed in your organization; however, if you are not also seriously exploring the background of the individual, you are opening your company up to significant liability. In order to protect your business from a dangerous and unsavory hire, you should conduct rigorous investigations before offering any candidate the position.
Organizations from all sectors face this issue today. Even Yale University has suffered at the hands of a poorly investigated hire as witnessed in theAnnie Le wrongful death lawsuit.
Annie Le was a pharmacology student at the university in 2009 when she was killed at the hands of Raymond Clark III, a University lab technician. While Clark was found guilty of her murder and is serving a 44-year sentence for the killing, Le’s family is suing the institution for their negligent hiring practices.
The prosecution contends that if Yale had properly investigated Clark, they would have discovered that he had “a violent propensity towards women” prior to his hire in 2004. After the crime, the police investigation into Clark’s past discovered allegations of a rape by his high school girlfriend when they were both students.
The suit further alleges that Yale should have used additional avenues to access information about Clark’s past because the University employed both Clark’s sister and brother-in-law as laboratory technicians in the very building where Le was killed. According to the suit, those employees were “well aware” of Clark’s dangerous propensities.
If the University had performed their due diligence, would they have uncovered Clark’s volatile background? Quite possibly. If they had uncovered it, would they then have hired such a man to work in an environment that is teeming with young women? Hopefully not. It is certain that they presently wish they had taken the opportunity to make an educated decision.
Regardless of what the courts decide in this case, Clark has forever tarnished certain aspects of Yale’s solid reputation. The very institution that demands its students act prudently and judiciously did not do so themselves.
Don’t leave the sanctity of your business open to the fates of a dangerous hire. Please contact us today for the assurance your business, employees, and consumers deserve.