Woman Backed For Reporting Coworker That Rifled Through Her Purse

A woman said in a now-viral post that she filed a report against her co-worker Martin after she caught him rifling through her purse.

Posting in Reddit's "Am I The A**hole" (AITA) forum under the username u/Serious-Court3252, the woman said Martin ultimately got in trouble with the higher-ups, which upset her other co-workers. The post has garnered over 9,600 upvotes and roughly 2,000 comments defending u/Serious-Court3252.

Workplace Etiquette

According to the Houston Chronicle, there are several workplace etiquette rules one should follow when interacting with co-workers, the first being to respect the other person's space.

The Houston Chronicle also advises against placing personal belongings on someone else's desk and reminds readers to always ask for permission before borrowing a co-worker's belongings.

Businessman with bag
A woman said in a now-viral post that she filed a report against her co-worker Martin after she caught him rifling through her purse. shironosov/istock

"Even [if an] item [is] company property, borrowing a stapler or pen from a co-worker is acceptable only when you ask. Do not look for things in drawers; nobody wants to think, 'A co-worker went through my desk!' when they return from the bathroom," the paper said.

It's also generally frowned upon to look through someone else's bag without permission. And some attorneys advise reporting this behavior to upper management.

Back in 2016, a worker with a similar problem took to Avvo, an online marketplace for legal services, to get advice on if she should file a report against her co-worker, to which attorney Michael O. Stevens said yes.

"It is probably not worth the hassle of reporting it to police, and without something being stolen they likely would not act anyway. You should consider reporting it to management though," Stevens advised.

'Both Hands'

In her post, u/Serious-Court3252 said she caught Martin with "both hands inside [her] purse" after returning to her desk from a bathroom break.

"I was shocked. I have highly personal stuff that I carry in my purse," u/Serious-Court3252 said.

Martin purportedly told u/Serious-Court3252 that he was just looking for her phone charger. Still, she thought he'd overstepped a boundary, so she filed a company report against him. Unfortunately, this upset her other co-workers.

"Martin got in trouble for this and he and my co-workers were pissed saying I overreacted and went way overboard by reporting this situation. My female coworker told me to 'get over myself' and stop crying victim over a simple 'misunderstanding,'" she concluded. "AITA?"

Redditors React

Redditors said u/Serious-Court3252 did nothing wrong and slammed Martin's and her other colleagues' behavior.

"NTA [not the a**hole]. Martin could have waited five minutes. NO ONE should be going through your personal belongings. I know it probably doesn't help if your co-workers are all on Martin's side, but YOU are in the right," u/columbospeugeot wrote.

"NTA. Martin needs to learn personal boundaries. Everybody else at your work does, too. I've never worked at a place where people would consider it appropriate to go through other people's personal property like that," u/Specialist-Lunch-410 said.

u/Leah_R_ning added: "I am disgusted by your co-workers. You did nothing wrong...Martin was disrespectful going into your purse."

Newsweek has reached out to u/Serious-Court3252 for comment.

More Viral Posts

On Thursday, Redditors backed a woman who accidentally "let" her pregnant co-worker get in trouble with their boss.

Commenters praised a woman earlier this month for embarrassing a co-worker after she caught said co-worker flirting with her husband.

And in August, Redditors slammed a new employee who reported her co-worker for creating a "hostile work environment."