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JGM, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 12067
Experience:  30 years as a practising solicitor.
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I made a complaint about a colleague with whom I share an office

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I made a complaint about a colleague with whom I share an office who I felt was bullying me. It turned out she had a history of harassing her office mates. I have never spoken to her about it directly, though her line manager has made her aware of my complaint and she clearly isn't happy with me. She works part time so, while I wait for a desk to open up elsewhere so I can move permanently, I sit with another colleague on the days she is in and sit in 'our' office when she is off. Today I noticed that an expensive jacket i left hanging in a suit bag on a rail in our office is missing. I have searched everywhere for it, despite having had no reason to move the jacket out of the office. And if I had moved it, I would have taken the suit bag with it. I think she may have done something with it. What should I do? I have no evidence. Setting up a covert camera to see if she does similar if I hang another jacket there seems like an extreme reaction, but is the only thing I can think of. I have tried to be as professional as possible about the bullying as she clearly has problems, but am so, so stressed by the situation at work that my jacket going missing is the final straw.
Thank you for your question.
You can report the missing jacket to your employer's but in the absence of evidence there is little that can be done.
Although it seems extreme taking a covert video or even putting a tracking device in another jacket or similar would appear to be one and perhaps the only way of dealing with this.
Please leave a positive response so that I am credited for my time.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Isn't videoing her without her/my employer's permission illegal? I am not a lawyer but I should mention that I work for a magic circle law firm

Would the history of bullyang and the absence of any other logical explanation for the disappearance of the jacket mitigate (from a legal standpoint) the decision to covertly video her?

What if the recording device is discovered before it has recorded anything incriminating - wouldn't my firm be justified in sacking me for gross misconduct/unlawful behaviour?

There may be issues with that if your employer didn't know about it. That's why I also suggested putting a tracking device in a jacket, such as a smart phone for example.
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