They say your past always catches up with you in the end - something one Sue Jones of Grand Junction, Colorado, can certainly attest.
Jones got a job with grocery store chain City Market, but a background check quickly came back with a "do not hire" flag, as Colorado's 11 News explains. The reason? Multiple charges "including a prior felony for drug possession and a misdemeanor for gambling" - the former involving substance abuse with Bugs Bunny and Porky Pig.
Jones was placed on administrative leave while 11 News pulled the court files relating to Jones's sordid past. It quickly discovered that while Sue Jones did indeed appear as the plaintiff, the date of birth given didn't match the real Sue Jones, the papers contained "no social security number or other identifying information that would have tied the cases to Jones", and the defendants were identified as Porky Pig, Bugs Bunny, and Elmer Fudrucker.
In fact, the papers were entirely ficticious "test" cases, marked as such, and designed as "practice for people working in the court system". Mary Perry, the Clerk of the Court for El Paso County, explained that "they often use arbitrary names for test cases", something which seems to have escaped background checking outfit General Information Systems (GIS) of South Carolina.
The company's executive vice president, David Bartley, told 11 News that GIS "pulls cases and reports it to employers but didn't want to comment on what happened in this particular instance until he read the cases and information".
11 News duly faxed Bartley the offending documents, but he "never called us back with a comment". GIS did, however, admit that such cases "are rare and people can dispute the findings to clear their name". It admitted "there is no system to track these kinds of errors".
The real Sue Jones, meanwhile, disputed the records and is now back at work. City Market said it would "look into what happened and possibly make a complaint with GIS". ®
Thanks to Graham Marsden for the tip-off.