|Out of universe information|
Ernie is a security guard working at ENCOM Tower. He is an unfit man, although he comes to the job with a respectable amount of courage, even to the point where he would venture out onto a crane on top of the ENCOM Tower in order to confront a trespasser.
Ernie was working a night shift on the eve of an ENCOM board meeting preceding the release of the company's new operating system, ENCOM OS-12. While he was passively monitoring the building's closed circuit security system, Sam Flynn infiltrated through several layers of building security to reach ENCOM's server room. Ernie became aware of the intrusion when the young Flynn interrupted a light beam across the server room doorway, sounding an alarm in the security station.
Ernie was initially evaded at the server room, but later caught up to Sam on top of the building where Sam had retreated out to the end of a crane. He was shocked when Sam revealed his identity as the leading shareholder and inquired as to why the young man would pull off such a stunt. Told only that, "You can't steal something that was designed to be free," Ernie watched in horror as Sam dived off the end of the crane. All he could do was stare in disbelief as Sam deployed a parachute partway through his descent.