What to do with thieving employee?

The writer does not know whether to forgive and forget a trusted employee who he says stole from him, fire her and alert the police and press charges?
The writer does not know whether to forgive and forget a trusted employee who he says stole from him, fire her and alert the police and press charges?
Image: Marcin Maslowski \ 123rf

I caught a valued and trusted employee stealing.

I caught her red-handed as she was exiting my business at the weekend.

So what now? Do I forgive and forget, or do I fire her and alert the police and press charges?

She has been employed in my business for 10 years, observing some of the low points and high points in her life. She was always sweet, gentle and kind... but the contract of "trust" has been shattered.

She is young and is raising her little girl with the help of her mother. Somewhere in her life is an absent baby daddy.

I am devastated... I suppose much like a man who is confronted with his wife's infidelity. My emotions are like a pendulum... swinging from intense anger to feeling sorry for her.

As an employer I can't show weakness, because other staff may see it as a signal to steal as well.

I have no words and no easy answers.

Why, why, why?

Peter Bachtis, Benoni

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