A California appellate court recently ruled that an administrative law judge and the State Personnel Board erred in excluding evidence of an employee’s prior dismissal from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department in hearings challenging termination from his current job. The ex-deputy had been fired for meeting a criminal who had tried to bribe him, but he misrepresented the violation on a job application as unsupervised contact with an informant, and was hired. The employer learned the true nature of the discharge through a published appellate court opinion and terminated the employee. Evidence of the decision was excluded in his appeal. The appellate court found that published court opinions available online or printed from microfilm were public record, not subject to the exclusionary rule. Public records were also not protected from disclosure as confidential personnel files. Evidence of the employee’s history was thus admissible and revealed his fraud in signing the application under penalty of perjury.
For an in depth analysis go to BB&K Police Bulletin: Employment Termination | Legal Alerts | Best Best & Krieger.
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