Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Report: Flatulence in the News

Update: Once new of the SSA workers’ reprimand hit the presses, administrators at SSA rescinded the reprimand against the unidentified worker accused of noxious workplace flatulence.

Excerpt from fart tracking table

Excerpt from fart tracking table

An employee of the Social Security Administration, where none of the windows open, was officially reprimanded on December 10, 2012, for “Conduct Unbecoming a Federal Worker,” specifically: for repeat noxious farting. In May 2012, the worker’s flatulence was described as an “awful and unpleasant odor,” that was so bad that others wouldn’t help with that person’s projects, and it was affecting performance. In August the Deputy Division Director told the worker to buy “GasX” to curb the “continuous release of your bodily gas and the terrible smell that comes with the gas,” which the worker explained came from lactose intolerance. Also in August, supervisors stated the belief that the person in question could indeed control their flatulence, and described the situation in the workplace as “hostile” because of it. In the interest of documenting everything, the supervisor also provides a neat columnar timetable showing the days and times of all the farts between September 7 and November 29 (60 farts in about as many work days, not counting holidays and leave). The reprimand was placed in the employee’s record. Your tax dollars at work.

On reflection it seems that the victims in the workplace farting incidents could have taken much more aggressive action, like Shannon Manatis, 41, of South Carolina when her husband Michael Manatis, 46, reportedly passed gas that was according to the police report, “bad enough to cause her to almost puke.” She fended off the assault with vanilla-scented Lysol, which she reportedly sprayed, near him. The husband, who claimed to have an upset stomach, stated that she sprayed his eyes, and that he threw water at her from his plastic bottle, followed by the bottle. She claimed it was a glass of tea. The officer reported that evidence was consistent with the husband’s story. No arrests were made.

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