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Is honesty the best policy after you’re arrested?

So far, I haven’t got a criminal record. I’ve been arrested, I’m under investigation by the police and I’m on bail.  I don’t know what’s going to happen in the future, I’ve been told different things by the police and my solicitor so I’ll just have to wait and see.  As a result of my arrest, I lost my job which has had a massive impact on the family income and also on my self-confidence.

I know that the police investigation can go on for a while and I realised a little while ago that I couldn’t just sit around waiting for things to happen to me.  I needed to get some purpose back into my life, a reason to get up in the morning and more importantly – a salary.

A couple of weeks ago, I managed to find a new job in a sales office.  Not my dream job but at least I was earning and not just sitting around at home.  The working hours didn’t conflict with the time I needed to sign on for bail so it all looked good.

I’d been working there for about a week when the Managing Director approached me.  He’d seen my CV, noticed that I had a finance background and asked me if I would consider becoming his accountant .  This came as such a shock that I told him I needed to have a think about it and would let him know.

I went home, spoke with my family and decided that I could:-

  1. Say nothing and take him up on his offer
  2. Say nothing, decline his offer and continue in the job I was doing
  3. Tell him the truth

I picked the 3rd option although I knew that legally I didn’t have to say anything – after all, I haven’t been charged with anything.

Unfortunately, the next day the MD wasn’t in but one of the supervisors was and she asked me whether I had made a decision.  Well, I took the bull by the horns and told her the truth.  She looked pretty shocked, told me it was the first she had heard of this and said that as the MD wasn’t around I should go home.  She said she’d speak to him over the weekend and would give me call to let me know ‘what they were going to do with me!’

I worried about it all over the weekend and a week later I still hadn’t been contacted.  I had convinced myself that they didn’t want me back.  Although I knew that I’d done nothing wrong, I didn’t really want to work somewhere that I wasn’t wanted.  I’d tried to be honest, I’d made a stupid mistake but it seemed that honesty just didn’t pay.

Well, the following week the MD rang me.  He wanted to know lots of details about the case (it was pretty intensive stuff and I got really upset as I was explaining it to him) and he told me that ‘although it wasn’t a deal breaker for him’, he would need to seek further advice and would get back to me with his decision.

Great news – he did come back to me.  He told me that I was wasted in the sales office and that he wanted to offer me a more admin type of role.  He actually created a new job especially for me and I am absolutely loving it.  I’m so relieved that I’ve got a job without having to fear that somebody will find out or I may say the wrong thing.  I’ve certainly got a job up until my court case and, all being well, I’ll get some sort of community order which will mean that I can carry on working when all this is over.

Just goes to show, there are employers out there that are willing to give people a second chance and I’ll be doing everything I can to repay the trust that has been placed in me.

By Hannah* (name changed to protect identity)

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