Case Study: Sergeant Jane Roberts
Unit 4 Assignment
In this case study, we will discuss decisions made by Sergeant Williams, talk about mistakes made, see if there is any fault, and determine how future situations, like this one, can be prevented and what the resolution should be. PSO Jane Roberts is a recent graduate and was in the top 10 percent of her class. After a 6 month, probationary period you are now a full-fledged PSO working on the same shift as your former FTO, Billy Williams, who holds a reputation for being a ladies man and who is also on his third marriage. While out grabbing some take-out, you see Williams and the recruit, Betty Brown, making out in Betty’s car. Torn between being a “rat” and informing your Sergeant of the misconduct, you decide that no good can come of this situation and you talk to your Sergeant about it.
Sergeant Jones did not make a sound operational decision to put FTO Williams in charge of the new recruits, especially an attractive female recruit. FTO Williams already had a reputation for being a ladies man, was on his third marriage, and was constantly worried about his appearance and flirting with women. FTO Williams’ actions were to be expected, even though he had no violations, you could easily see where his actions were headed and steps should have been taken to remove him from a leadership position. In the beginning Sergeant Jones, should have put FTO Williams in a different position, while FTO Williams should have been able to show some self-discipline, he didn’t, and “corrective measures must be taken when performance falls short” according to (Garner, 2010). In the beginning Sergeant Jones should not have left the P’s And Q’s to be minded all on the shoulders of PSO Roberts, he should’ve given the responsibility and the warnings to FTO Williams on his actions, and then told the recruit, Betty Brown to be on her best behavior as well. Why would you continue to allow an FTO to remain in his position while he has behaved so irresponsibly?
In the future, a meeting before the new recruits are released to the FTO, or set out to work alone, they should be warned of the behavior that is appropriate and inappropriate. They should be given all the rules and guidelines they may not have been given in training, and they should be given guidance in common problem areas, like fraternization. When a Sergeant knows his FTO’s behavior, the Sergeant can direct the FTO to the “Employee Assistance Program for info about marital or personal difficulties” per (Garner, 2016). There are programs available to assist the Supervisors with all sorts of training, this could have deterred Williams from engaging in relations with Betty Brown. Not only do the new recruits need to know that this type of behavior will not be tolerated, but the FTO needs to know it as well.
Sergeant Jones, FTO Williams, and Betty Brown all had faults in this situation. Sergeant Jones knew FTO Williams could not, and should not be trusted in his position because of his repeated behavior. FTO Williams is a married man, he knew what he was doing was wrong, and he abused his position of authority of the recruit. Betty Brown knew that the FTO was married, and since everyone talks at work, she had to have known his reputation, but she made the choice to continue down that path anyways. All three were at fault, but it could have been prevented if Sergeant Jones had stepped in before he waited for a violation to happen. Sergeant Jones also could have given corrective training before the event, in the form of sexual harassment classes or FTO refresher course on what behavior is acceptable and what isn’t.
In this case, I did not read that Sergeant Jones gave a warning to FTO Williams about his behavior, and a punishment out of nowhere would seem unfair. Per Miller, More, & Braswell “Discipline has to have consistency and employees must be given a clear warning that a particular behavior or offense will result in disciplinary actions” (2017). Therefore, this should be the time for the warning, and Sergeant Jones must make it clear that this is unacceptable behavior and that FTO Williams faces demotion within the department, meaning his wife and his officers would know his actions. Sergeant Jones would need to bring in Betty Brown and have a word with her as well, she needs to be warned of her behavior and that she faces disciplinary actions as well. The two of them should be removed from working directly, and placed on different shifts. Sergeant Jones should also have a training session on the issues with in house fraternization and the policies of the department so that everyone knows the rules and standards.
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