I went on a work trip with my boss and we stayed at an AirBNB that was under my boss's name. She brought along her baby, and wanted a house to stay in so she could hire a babysitter to watch her baby while we were at work meetings. The AirBNB was very nice, and we both talked about staying there in the future.
After we had left the AirBNB at the end of our week long stay (around 7pm) my boss (who reserved the AirBNB so she was the only one in communication with the host) got a text from the host saying she was missing a yoga/buddhist book. Both my boss and I didn't even see any books in the home, so my boss texted back saying we didn't see any books nor did we know what happened to the book that she believed to be missing.
2 weeks later I am scheduled for a regular meeting with my boss. I arrive at the meeting with my boss only to find not only my boss in the room, but my bosses boss, and an HR Representative. I am immediately questioned and interrogated about the AirBnB and all personal items I had with me during the stay, and if I saw a yoga/buddhist book and if I know what happened to the book. I still say I had never seen the book in question.
Then my boss pulls out her phone with a photo the host had of me holding a book (only the back of the book is visible in the photo), and claims that it is her book (the host does not remember the title of the book nor the content (just thinks it is about yoga) as she has never read the book, but thinks the one I am holding in a photo from a hidden camera at her home is her book). The book in my hand is not about yoga nor Buddhism. But because the host thinks she recognizes the book as her own from the hidden camera she had a the house, she is adamant I took the book.
So now I am believed to be a book thief. I was then asked to go home and get the book I believed was mine and bring it in. I ran home, got the book, and HR sent a photo of the cover with the title of the book now, and the host responds that yes, that was her missing book.
HR, my boss, and my bosses boss is still deliberating on what to do from here. I have maintained my innocence all along, and am so hurt that my employer would even think that I would steal a book and lie about it.
This all happened on Monday, and I have noticed a difference in the way I am treated (our office setting is very small and walls are very thin). I feel like I am being shunned and treated differently as a result of this false accusation.
I have another meeting tomorrow, and am wondering how best to try to remedy the situation (meanwhile my book is still in HR's hands, and my boss claims she gave her credit card information to the host to cover the book's expense). What should I be prepared with when I go into the meeting?