A former call center employee is in big trouble after lying about testing positive for coronavirus just so he could be out of work for two weeks.
31-year-old Jeffrey Travis Long from Inman, South Carolina is being charged with breach of peace and forgery after he claimed to his job that he had the virus.
Long—who worked at Sitel Corporation, a contact center in Spartanburg County—forged a fake doctor’s note stating that he had the virus, causing the business to shut down for five days.
His note was revealed to be fake after doctors at the office he was supposed to have been treated at confirmed he had never been seen by their facility.
Investigators also told WYFF News 4 that Long’s note did not have an official stamp from the hospital.
Spartanburg County Sheriff Chuck Wright said in a press conference Long lied about having COVID-19 to get out of work for two weeks.
“He just wanted a two week vacation,” Wright said of the suspect.
Sitel released a statement Sunday (Mar. 15) about the fraudulent claims made by Long and the ongoing investigation.
“On March 13, we reported to authorities that an employee at our Spartanburg, South Carolina site self-reported testing positive for COVID-19. Once reported, we immediately evacuated employees from the Spartanburg site and conducted rigorous sanitization of the entire facility.
“Today, the Spartanburg County Sheriff’s Office alerted Sitel that this employee made fraudulent claims about testing positive for COVID-19.
“Based on these fraudulent claims, the Spartanburg Sheriff’s Office has issued an arrest warrant for this individual. The individual is no longer employed at Sitel.
“We are currently working in close partnership with the Spartanburg County Sheriff’s Office, and since this is an ongoing investigation, we will direct any requests for statements or information about this investigation to the Spartanburg County Sheriff’s Office.
“At this time, our focus is on the safety and wellbeing of our employees who returned to work at our Spartanburg site on Wednesday, March 18th, 2020. We’ve taken precautionary safety measures at this site to ensure:
We communicated this situation to all employees. Linked here is an update we’ve shared with our employees.
We continue to follow all COVID-19 safety protocols (outlined above in our Overview) to protect the safety of our employees.”
Long was granted a $10,000 bond and fined $200. The sheriff’s office will also file an additional count of forgery against him.