Bob Jones University Administrator Suspended For Soliciting Prostitute 22 Years Ago

Joseph Bartosch was hired in 2007 by Bob Jones University. Sixteen years before, he was charged with soliciting a prostitute. Roughly 1 in 5 American adults have arrest or conviction records, and many of them hope that prospective employers won't ever find out about their pasts. Joseph Bartosch, right, wouldn't be exceptional in that regard except that he's the chief brand officer at a fundamentalist Christian university in Greenville, S.C., and was charged earlier in his life for soliciting a prostitute.

Bartosch, a 1982 graduate of Bob Jones University, was hired in 2007 and was named chief brand officer last year. But it wasn't until March 15 that the administration discovered Bartosch had been arrested and charged with solicitation two decades earlier; he had served three days in jail and was later sentenced to three years of probation, according to South Carolina TV station WBTW. A university spokesman said that when the school's administration asked Bartosch about his criminal record, he confirmed the allegation and was "indefinitely" suspended the same day.

Neither the school nor Bartosch responded to requests for an interview by the Greenville News, located in South Carolina.
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More: Job Hunters Cry Foul Over Employers' Use Of Background Checks


AOL Jobs contributor and employment lawyer Donna Ballman says that Bartosch's predicament isn't "unusual" in the labor market. Ballman said in an email that "some states prohibit employers from asking about arrests and convictions, but most allow this. If you're asked, you have to tell the truth or risk being fired if your employer finds out you lied."

This past April, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission released new guidelines on the use of arrest and conviction records in employment decisions. In what was seen as a victory for job seekers, criminal background checks are only sanctioned by the EEOC when they are deemed to be job-related and necessary for the business. An employer can fire or refuse to hire someone for any reason, Ballman asserts, including a criminal record.
"The exception would be an illegal reason such as discrimination" -- as when minorities can prove that they are being targeted, Ballman says. "Or whistle-blowing," she adds.

Bob Jones University describes itself on its website as a "biblically faithful" school. It made major news in the 2000 election for hosting then-candidate George W. Bush while still banning interracial dating, according to CNN. (It overturned the policy in March of that year.)

The school plans to investigate Bartosch's case. But according Greenville TV station WYFF, when Bartosch was hired, the school did not conduct background checks of its employees, a practice it now implements.

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story said that Bartosch was hired by Bob Jones University in 2012. He became the school's chief brand officer in 2012 but was first employed in its Information Technologies Division in 2007.

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Dan Fastenberg

Dan Fastenberg

Associate Editor

Dan Fastenberg was most recently a reporter with TIME Magazine. Previously, he was a writer for the Thomson Reuters news service's Latin America desk. He was also a reporter and associate editor for the Buenos Aires Herald while living in South America.

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Zazza

The guy looks hungry for more. Ah, if only Bethsheba would show her struts on one of the campus building's rooftops! Bet he'd be quicker than King David!

April 18 2013 at 5:29 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
thomas_gould

haa.. old bartosch. never liked that guy (haven't seen him in like 15-18 years). he made it seem like he was better and holier than all! Not surprised of him having sex with a *****... He scolded the young boys and perved on the young woman. he's a sales man, makes you believe that nice colored candy shell is so good that you dont realize the chocolate inside is not so good. He was a single guy probably, so get some, what ever, were human we have all have needs, just dont act like your a hot shot christian and never done anything wrong.. we all have!!! I think that BJU might be suspending him because he ****** ****** while he was a sworn to be a "born again Christian". Candy Shell... how many time can you be born again?

April 03 2013 at 3:52 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Rachel

Thank you Jesus that you do not "fire" us for sins committed in the past. Shame on whoever has made this public. It is no one's business but his and God's. If this was an ongoing thing, that's different but even then, it should stay amongst his spiritual leaders. Its like the story goes. A person can drive nails through a fence and do all kinds of damage just like our words and our "sharing concern" However even if all those nails are removed, the fence will never look the same.

April 02 2013 at 1:13 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
justsomegeek256

It's mainly the fact that he lied about it that has him up against the ropes. I mean, if he lied for personal gain once, why wouldn't he do it again? It's not even about the charges.

March 29 2013 at 9:31 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
jerald3739

I think that taking a job action against a person 22 years later is ridiculous if during this span of time the person has no record of continuing offenses.

March 28 2013 at 1:01 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Mary

Are they afraid he hasn't yet repented for his sins?

March 27 2013 at 6:43 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Michelle

22 Years ago? How many of us are the same person 22 years ago. What about redemption, forgiveness, repentance...

March 27 2013 at 6:39 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Lynda

Twenty-two years ago? God, Christians can be the most gossipy, mean-spirited people. Catholics have their pedafiles; Muslims have their serial killing thing; Christians have their inability to forgive and allow people to move on. He obviously has been an outstanding member of their team based on the promotions he has earned, but I bet he does not have a change in hel of keeping his job.

March 27 2013 at 3:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
primroseln53

Ok, he works at a Christian College. Whatever happened to forgiveness? This incident is over 20 yrs. old and apparently he\'s moved on. I\'m sure God in Heaven has forgiven him, why can\'t the Christians? He has my support and prayers.

March 27 2013 at 3:01 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
hlvme2

It is always a good and safe thing to investigate. Some jobs does warrant this ie children, seniors, banks, the President, churches, schools etc. Honesty is still the best policy. There is always a consequence for our actions. If Bob Jones U thinks that this man will solicits his female student, then he would be a threat to conduct- However, how has he been since 2007 when he began working there?. He must be releaved now that its in the open. I wish him well as he deals with his problems.

March 27 2013 at 12:13 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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