Position:  Sr. Project Manager for a software develpment firm.

Location and company the hotbed of conservative republicans.

Identified a candidate who looked perfect on paper, phone interview outstanding, candidate flown in for on site.  Tall, good looking young man, personable to the max, dressed like he stepped out of GQ, outstanding background.  Client loved him, made an offer 20% higher than they had every mentioned. Three months temp housing and a 15K hiring bonus plue physical move after his home sells in California.  He accepted and was excited about moving to a smaller city from the West Coast.


As we discussed his move he mentioned that his wife was a "little person" and wanted to know what resources were available in the town.  Also had a daughter who had the same condition.  Not a problem resources were available as there is a medical school and specialists in that city.

Went  in for a househunting trip.  The wife was in fact a "little person"  a dwarf not a midget.  As  was the baby.  Ok, not a problem, company does  not hire based on who someone is married to ever.


He calls me and says he is going to take his drug test but needs to tell me that he was so excited about his new  job that he went to a party and smoked a little grass, something he does not do and it was stupid.  I call my client HR and discuss.  Ok, let's see what comes back..  Company is not that  picky if it's just a little maryjane.  Test comes back  ok so we move on.


He reports for work.  Says his wife is staying behind until the home sells , it's brand new so shouldn't be a problem.  He moves into an extended stay hotel at company expense.  All is going well, everybody loves him.  Then he announces  to several of his coworkers that he was gay but is now bisexual.  Ok, not a problem but some eyebrows are beginning to arch a bit but no dis crimination here.

The day before his  three month temp housing is to end he goes in and says that he has been unable to sell his home so is going to have to quit and move back to the West Coast.  He is unable to pay back his hiring bonus because he had to use that to pay the balance of the down payment on his new home.  And there is one other little problem.  The feds have raided his hotel room and confiscated his computer because it had kidde porn on it and he may be facing federal charges..

He did in fact repay the hiring bonus over the next three years in monthly payments.  Nobody knows if he went to the pen for kidde porn.


And by the by, his references were stellar.  But, what you see may not be what you get, should it have derailed along the way.  Maybe but it was one of those horror stories that everyone would like to forget.  One of the sharpest candidates this company ever hired.  Except he wasn't what he appeared to be.

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Keith, I just wanna know what search string you're using to find these guys...

Keith Plesha said:

I have you beat but I'm not happy about. 


I had an offer pending to Bruce Pardo in 2008 before he went on his massacre dressed as Santa...he killed 9 people and then himself.  It was a classified project dealing with radar algorithms.  His flight was all ready booked.  We were, however, asked to backfill.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bruce_Pardo


Another guy that worked for me killed his wife and child. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neil_Entwistle


Moral of the story: Both were regular guys with shining references.  Sorry, I may have taken this to a disturbing level.

Republicans? In the Panhandle? I don't know any of those : )

I can't outdo any of these stories (yet), but I'm sure with living in Austin there are always one or two around the corner.

@Dustin, lol, we won't tell anybody where you are from or what your relatives do for a living.

@Tami, I cannot tell you many times I said, "oh god, oh wow" during those three months. Every time I thought it was over here came another unspeakable blast. The VP of HR and I still cannot figure out how that drug test came back clean or if there was anything we could have done. We can't.

the drug test was rigged! the candidate was too deceitful!! terrible, no other words.. really hard time, sandra!

If it was rigged it was the first hair test anyone ever heard of that was falsified and the lab quality control said there was no way. It was done while he was in the city where the company is located when was there with his wife for a visit.

I would like to say we learned something but other than the fact that we can never know what is in someone's mind it was just a bizarre situation.

I've had a couple of those in the past. From day 1 they systematically deteriate as more skeletons appear. Is drug testing standard in the US?

@John , yes drug testing is standard with all but some very small businesses.

Sandra.  That is the craziest recruiting story I've ever heard.  At least you can talk about it now...

@Scott, it happened in 1999. It was like we were dealing with two different people. As it unfolded I recall making the comment to my client, "are we talking about the same person we both interviewed?". My HR contact asked me if I had ever seen the movie, "The Lizard People". The interesting thing about it was we would never have known any of it if he hadn't told us. It would have been just an unfortunate fallout of a very sharp employee.

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