Well, the shit hit the fan in our lab. Of course, Post-doc decided to go medieval on the other person's ass when I wasn't around (as usual). A couple other employees were in the lab and witnessed the verbal assault. While Nice Coworker (the victim) and I were discussing what happened, one of the other employees overheard and agreed the situation truly was That Bad.
So far, Nice Coworker (NC) has been blamed multiple times for things she didn't do. As in she had no part in collecting the samples in question and had no part in some plants that were slightly damaged by a pesticide. Yet somehow she is fully to blame. These sorts of accusations have been going on for a couple of months and NC stated she was able to handle the situation. As of this last incident, she's not so sure, is having stomache pains at work and is starting to consider looking for a new job.
What I also learned: Post-doc gives her a hard time over taking full lunch breaks (that we are provided BY LAW). Post-doc expects her to stay late and finish projects/prep materials for the next day even though she leaves at or shortly after 5. As in "I need this for tomorrow and expect it to be ready when I get here" (which generally is 15-45 minutes late). NC is salaried and receives no pay for extra hours. Post-doc hints at or even asks NC to come in on weekends. NC hasn't taken the bait on that.
I let things settle down and mulled it over for a couple days then went to the boss and filled him in. I didn't feel good about doing it, but NC deserves to be treated with kindness and respect. We all do. She doesn't deserve rants, lectures, condescending talk or to be yelled at.