Amidst budget cuts and expected layoffs, two employees of the North Miami Police Department had the ingenious plan of using birdseed in an attempt to make the city manager leave. According to the Santeria religion, there is a superstition whereby putting birdseed in a person’s office or house will make the person leave.
The officer and office manager explained that they were not doing anything harmful and it was just a superstition which one of them had used in the past on members of their family in order to make them leave the house.
Given the fact that the two employees could not have access to the manager’s office, they sought the help of the janitor to implant the birdseed in the office. The janitor was suspicious of this plan and did not want to be part of it and ended up informing her superiors of the plan.
An investigation was initiated which led to the dismissal of the office manager while the contract of the police officer who has union protection has still not been terminated. Both employees maintained that this santarian ritual is not malicious.