Archive for the ‘Background Checks’ Category


Sunday, December 9th, 2012

This October in New York City, a fifty-year-old nanny stabbed the two children, ages 6 and nearly 2, in her care, then stabbed herself, trying to commit suicide. On returning home with her third child to their posh apartment in Manhattan‘s West Side, the mother of the dead children faced that horrific scene.

Could it have been prevented?

The nanny had been employed with the family for about two years. Neighbors said that she had recently complained of money problems and seemed unhealthy and upset. Perhaps the parents should have noticed these dangerous signs.

Investigating a potential new-hire, professional investigative agenciessuch as Gold Shield Elitefind it valuable to look into the financial records. Although a nanny’s child-minding skills are not reflected there, these records can indicate whether of not the candidate has that portion of her life under control. Emotional and psychological instability, even when nearly invisible, often lead to financial misbehavior, a valuable warning sign for prospective employers.

As part of a thorough investigation of a child-care aide, review of criminal and financial records provide insights that can be missed when relying solely on recommendations and interviews. While you are not at home, and the nanny is in your house, with your children, you need to be confident that nothing improper is occurring.

“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Some losses can never be regained.

Don’t be nearly sure. Let Gold Shield Elite investigate. Be certain.


Thursday, September 13th, 2012

We are referring to real shooting pains here…bullet wounds…not backaches or migraines.

This August we had two scary, local examples of workplace gunplay: on August 24, near the Empire State Building, a recently fired employee shot his former supervisor and then himself.  A week later, in New Jersey, an angry supermarket employee shot two customers and then himself. All five died.

What can you do?

Prevention can be assisted by recognizing the signs of impending employee violence [as outlined by Michael Staver, psychologist, cited by Susan Adams at]: 1. Excessive complaining. 2. Withdrawal. 3. Variation from typical behavior. 4. Obsessive thought patterns or conversations. 5. Dramatic and unreasonable demands. 6. Personal insults. 7. Threats.

Sometimes, mere non-confrontational one-on-one listening to the employee’s complaints will help defuse the situation. Skilled human relations personnel can be valuable for this. On occasion. the police may need to be called…certain steps can be taken beforehand to keep it from reaching that level.

A private investigation agency can help lower your risk of workplace violence. As noted on our site, pre-screening of the employees, monitoring of their behavior, preparation for lock-down and evacuation if needed,  checking on terminated employees, control of terminated employee returns to company property, added protection of management’s homes…some or all of these should be used, after a professional threat assessment has been made. For further information, contact us.

***** Don’t be nearly sure. Let Gold Shield Elite investigate. Be certain.


Thursday, March 8th, 2012

“Angela Renee Sykes has been sentenced to 30 months probation for stealing from the estate of the late actress Ava Gardner” — so ran the headline six years ago summarizing the conviction of the care-taker for Ava’s elderly sister Myra. This care-taker embraced the “taker” part of “care-taker” all too well.

“Mickey Rooney Claims Elder Abuse: Actor’s testimony to Congress helps spur bill for new crackdown” — reported the AARP Bulletin of March 2, 2011. Ninety-year-old Rooney, veteran of over 300 films, sought protection from his step-son and his step-son’s wife, claiming they denied him necessities while ruining him financially. This AARP report also cited the American Psychological Association’s estimate that “more than 2 million older adults suffer from physical, financial or other forms of abuse, often at the hands of family members,” and other experts estimate the number to be much higher, because many such events go unreported.

Crimes against the elderly in their homes by those entrusted with their safety occur daily, rarely making headlines, unless the victims have celebrity status or connections.Those you hire to care for your loved ones need to be carefully checked before you give them the run of the household and allow daily contact with patients who may not dare or may not be able to complain. This is where Gold Shield Elite Investigations can be of help, with initial screening and periodic checks.

These two examples involving famous people remind us that even family members are not above abusing seniors, and even long-term employees cannot be fully trusted.Those you are trusting with your elders and your possessions need to be checked on beforehand and regularly thereafter. See our GSEI site for the kinds of investigations available and the signs to pay attention to in order to detect elder abuse — physical,psychological, or financial.

Don’t be nearly sure. Have us investigate. Be certain.

Important Lesson: Nanny Due Diligence

Friday, January 27th, 2012

She seems nice, capable. You’ve checked her last employer or two, and she checked out fine. You are ready to trust your children, your possessions, your identity information to her, right? On second thought, you go to the Internet and Google “nanny crimes” and come up with over four million “hits,” including “Traveling Nanny Hired Online Charged with Sex Crimes” and “Babysitter Jennifer Duran Martinez, 35, is being held without bail on suspicion of child abuse homicide.” Was calling a couple of references sufficient for you?

You can Google your nanny’s name or names on the Internet and hope to come up with critical information, or you can ask a professional todo a background check. That’s where we come in. After twenty-one years with the New York Police Department, having risen to the level of homicide detective, I retired and started Gold Shield Elite Investigations. One of our earliest clients was a husband and wife team, he a surgeon, she a psychologist. They were hiring a nanny, and the husband asked the wife about the nanny’s identity and history. After all, their children, possessions, personal identity information, checkbooks, jewelry, keys, etc., would all be vulnerable while the nanny was taking care of the kids. The wife thought the woman would be fine for the position, but she agreed it was prudent to let us do some nanny-hiring due diligence.

We ran a background check on the nanny for this couple. We checked not only her, but her close relatives. We looked not only for crimes but for other tell-tale signs of possible problems, such as bankruptcies, close relatives convicted of crimes, and more. We know how to “read between the lines.” We gave them our report. They wdfere surprised by what we found and decided to hire someone else.

When you are pretty sure, have us dig deeper. You want to be very sure.

Check out our NYC background check services. You can contact us or call us at 1-888-213-8881.

Protecting Your Child From Predators and Identity Theft

Monday, March 21st, 2011

NYC Nanny Background Checks

Know who is really taking care of your child while protecting against the possibility of falling victim to identity theft from within at the same time.

You may not think it, but nannies in NYC, the big apple, can be rotten apples underneath there smiling exterior. This has nothing to do with the nature of nannies, absolutely not. However, a nanny is a form that a scam artist will take – it is their disguise to get your guard down.

Most BAD nannies fall into the same category: Opportunists

It is important to protect against the very real possibility of that bad nanny, a lot of ID theft comes from someone you know or from someone within. Bare in mind that a nanny has access to to your personal information. Or in the least, they can gather information piece by piece.

Over  time  clients become comfortable with their nannies and leave their checkbooks out, bank statements, unopened credit card offers etc.  That bad nanny slowly picks up bits of the pieces of the puzzle to formulate their puzzle … YOUR IDENTITY. With your name date of birth possibly social security number, bank accounts etc.  Before you even realize it or when you go apply for  credit, you find out you’re DENIED due to a ruined credit score.

Conducting a background check is not foolproof, but usually there are enough red flags present for an experienced investigator to detect.

Curious as to what the red flags can be or what a background check entails? Visit our NYC background checks page, or call us toll-free at: 1-888-213-8881