My boss sent me on a 6 hour long wild goose chase for the sake of proving a point, how do I respond?

To start out, I’ve had issues with this job and with this boss for a long time. I’m a graduate assistant who should only work a max of 20 hours/week and we’re paid as such. I actually work twice that on most weeks with no additional pay. Despite this, I’ve been yelled at, mocked and publicly embarrassed by 2 different bosses. One of these bosses did something recently that I just can’t get past.

A month or two ago I left an iPad somewhere, which, to be fair, I shouldn’t have. I thought about it as I was leaving that day, but it was in a place that I figured someone else would pick it up. This is my fault, I admit that and I shouldn’t have left the iPad there. The next time we need it, a few days later, I’m looking for it and can’t find it. I ask a coworker and they tell me that they’re pretty sure they saw my boss pick it up. I go ask my boss, and he was a deer in headlights if I’ve ever seen one. He froze, hesitated, eyes got real big and then said he doesn’t have it. I didn’t entirely believe him, but I took him at his word. No one seemed worried about it, and it was a cheap iPad so I just kinda moved on, we had an easy work around for the only thing we used that iPad for. That is until inventory happened a few days ago. I was asked about it by someone unaware it was lost, I said I lost it and was told to search high and low until I could find it and if I couldn’t, I’d potentially need to talk to police about it. Before I did this, I texted my boss to see if he had come across it. He said no, so I searched, I turned the building upside down, I went to see if it were turned in to police, I asked countless people if they’d seen it, somewhat embarrassing myself in the process. My boss was aware I was doing all of this. At the end of the second day of searching, I’d given up. I had no where else to check. At this point, I’m offering to cover the expense of a new one. I go home and a few hours later, my boss calls me and says that he found it on his bookshelf and has no idea how it got there. I don’t believe that, but to this moment, I’m playing dumb and pretending to just be happy that we found it.

Honestly, I’m furious. This is entirely out of line. I can’t just quit because they are paying for my degree and I’m in my last semester of it, I’ve gotta finish. I am however, planning on telling him I will only work what my contract states for the rest of the semester, 20 hours/week and I know he can’t do anything about that to prevent it. Should I also report him? Do I tell him I know the truth or do I keep playing dumb and say I’m cutting down on work to focus on classes and the job hunt? This is entirely new territory for me here, so any advice is appreciated

tl;dr: I “lost” an iPad at work, was sent to search for it for 6 hours only for my boss to find it in his office and “not know how it got there”. I know this is a lie, I’m furious, how do I respond?



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