Babysitter seems to have stolen. Should we confront/report her?
March 8, 2014 12:31 PM Subscribe
The young woman who takes care of my baby nephew seems to have stolen from my mother's home. Yesterday my mother collected some money from a tenant and left it in an envelope in her bedroom, in an unlocked wardrobe. As usual, she left home to pick up her grandaughter from school and was away for around half an hour. During that time, the babysitter and my baby nephew remained in the house. When my mother got back home, the babysitter told her that she had to leave slightly earlier than usual due to some personal problems (sick relative).
posted by Basque13 to Human Relations (39 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Shortly afterwards, my mother noticed that half the money in the envelope was gone, and so was her gold ring, which she kept in the drawer of her bedside table. Later she also noticed that two (inexpensive) medals which she keeps in another drawer in the living room were, strangely, on the sofa. My sister tells me that a bag with medicines and some pocket money had also disappeared a few days earlier. More disturbingly, my mother found two of her kitchen knives hidden under the TV table, right next to the baby carpet where my nephew and the babysitter usually play. Conceivably, she might have planned to take them out if confronted about the stealing yesterday or before.
Needless to say, I was shocked to learn this. This young woman has only been working at my family's home for around a month. I live in another city, but I met her twice when I was visiting, and she seemed nice. I don´t know if it's of any relevance, but I learned she's 22, dropped out from high school, a born-again christian, has 7 siblings, lives in one of the toughest neighborhoods in town and helps to support her younger siblings.
My mother is confused as to what to do. Even though the babysitter had been sort of flaky (arriving late often, cancelling at the last minute after having confirmed, leaving earlier etc.), she seemed to take good care of the baby and, till yesterday, my mother had a generally positive opinion of her. But no outsider could have entered the house without the bs noticing it.
There is no agency involved. I believe my sister found this young woman through a common acquaintance.
The options my family are considering are 1) have the babysitter taken to the police station and her house searched (my sister's preferred option, a judge she knows already confirmed it can be done as soon as my sister files a report)
2) Report the missing items, describing the time and circumstances in which they went missing, without pointing a finger at the babysitter (my mother's preferred option).
3) (Maybe my suggestion, but not sure it's a good idea): Phone the babysitter before speaking to the police, giving her a chance to return what she took before having her arrested. I know that will give her the chance to get rid of the stolen items, supposing she hasn´t already.
In addition to being very disappointed and still sort of incredulous at what happened, my mother is concerned with eventual retaliation from the girl or her family if the police are called in.
My sister feels angry and betrayed, and wants to have the bs punished.
I understand both positions. I know my mother really needed that money which was stolen. I also know the chances of retrieving anything might not be worth all the trouble.
How do you see it from the distance? What sounds like a sensible approach?