When background checks aren't enough

Door-to-door security sales rep charged with rape and attempted murder, but company who hired him says it had no information showing he was threat
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Wednesday, January 4, 2012

KNOXVILLE, Tenn.—SecureWatch, an ADT authorized dealer based here, takes steps to make sure job applicants don’t have criminal backgrounds—such as paying a top-notch company to do background checks on them and searching the Internet for information about them, said company COO Paul Victor.

So the company was stunned to learn that a brand-new door-to-door sales rep it had hired—who Victor said had checked out clean—stands charged with raping and attempting to murder a potential customer in her home last week while he was working for SecureWatch in Tampa, Fla.

Rashad Hales, 19, of Tampa, was out selling security systems the evening of Dec. 30 when he forced his way into the woman’s home, raping and choking her and threatening her with a knife, according to news reports.

“This is beyond shocking,” Victor told Security Systems News. “We did all the damn right things and still this happened. So I guess the lesson is: You never know and think about the unthinkable.”

No information the company had about Hales would have predicted he would be a threat to anyone, Victor said.

Hales was only in his ninth day of working for SecureWatch—which has about 1,500 employees and which sells door-to-door throughout the Southeast, ranging from Cincinnati to Florida—when the attack allegedly occurred, Victor said.

Hales, a high school student working on his GED, was eager to have the sales job over the winter break, according to the Tampa Bay Times.

Victor declined to name the company that SecureWatch hires to do background checks but said it is used by the industry’s top security companies and is “supposedly the cream of the crop.” The company reported Hales had no criminal background, Victor said.

“There was nothing. The guy was as clean as a whistle,” Victor said. “Then it turned out because of the level of access we had in our commercial background search, we didn’t see until I read in the paper that he had some juvenile offenses.” Hales previously was charged with misdemeanor offenses—battery when he was 14 and trespassing when he was 15, the Tampa Bay Times reported.

Because background-check companies don’t always have access to all criminal databases, the Electronic Security Association is urging the passage of federal legislation that would allow electronic security companies to search the FBI’s database to determine whether job applicants have a criminal record, SSN reported recently.

However, it’s not clear in this case whether having access to the FBI database would have uncovered Hales’ juvenile records with the state, or whether they would have made a difference. “Having the immediate vision of hindsight, I would say absolutely I would never have hired him, but I don’t know if that’s a fair statement,” Victor said.

Because “14-year-olds sometimes do silly things,” he said, SecureWatch decides on a case-by-case basis if an applicant with a minor offense as a juvenile is suitable for hiring.

In Hales’ case, he said, the company made its hiring decision “based on history, and there was none.”

Comments

Ok Not to ask the wrong question but Florida has the requirement that ALL salesman along with others are required to go thru a Background check with the FDLE.  Now i understand that the issue happened 9 days after his  hiring but the background check only takes a couple of  days.  It requires a fingerprint card to be submitted to FDLE for review of state records.  

Your article dose not even mention the  Florida state law requirements for working in the Alarm industry. 

 

Hi Ed: Thanks for writing in and thanks for the information on Florida's law. I was not aware of that requirement so it was not something I asked Paul Victor about. Perhaps because Mr. Hales was hired just before the holiday season, the state had not yet processed his background check in the timely fashion in which you say it usually responds. However, even if the state had uncovered Mr. Hales juvie misdemeanor record, it's still not clear whether that would have prevented his being hired. Mr. Victor said that SecureWatch makes hiring decisions on a case-by-case basis in such situations. I think the point of the story is that sometimes, no matter how much information you gather about an employee, you can't predict future behavior. Tess.

My company Protection Plus Solutions, http://wwwprotectionplussolutions.com

Is a leading background screening company that provides the safest and most secure background screening system for retail Door-to-Door marketing companies and the home service industry.

Not only do we provide an indepth and thorough background check, we also monitor each employee every month for criminal misconduct after hire. Our CrimSPY monitoring system provides the peace of mind companies need in the home service industry. We also provide a very unique ID badging system that allows home owners, busniess owners, and law enforcement agencies the ability to review information about a home service technician or door to door sales rep by either logging into our website to verify an ID badge or into the company website that they're working for. 

Also, if a sales rep has made an appointment with a customer the ID badge can be sent via email. The ID badge will show that the tecnician or sales rep is authorized to enter their home or business. 

If after hire there is a criminal hit, the ID badge will show as FAILED on our website, an alert will be generated to the company their working for and will also update on the companies website.

Our pricing is competitive and we do provide volume discounts.

Contact us at 1877 725-5412 or visit us at www.protectionplussolutions.com for additional information. You can also view our ID badging system on our website under BadgeLINK (TM)

 

Since my company Protection Plus Solutions is in the background screening industry, and the comment came up about Florida law, I felt it was important to provide the list of state regulations as it pertains to Alarm Licensing Requirements. 

http://www.kirschenbaumesq.com/alarmlicreqstate.htm

While some states have specific mandates regarding background screening requirements of Alarm companies and service contractors, others do not. This is why it is imperative that Alarm companies provide the safest and most secure background screening service in the industry for their valued customers. After all, these service technicians hired are going into your customer’s homes or businesses.

Also the Federal Trade Commission posts specific guidelines for consumers regarding the safety and security home owners need to be aware of when an alarm salesman does knock on their door. There are many scam artists out there that prey on alarm companies who do not provide a thorough background check and thus get inside customers homes or businesses.

This is what’s stated on the FTC website: “Before you do business with anyone selling a home security or alarm system, whether they come to your door or you seek them out, the FTC and your state Attorney General urge you to ask potential contractors for the following information. Use it to check out the alarm company with the appropriate authorities: your state Attorney General (www.naag.org), local consumer protection agency (www.consumeraction.gov), Better Business Bureau (www.bbb.org), and state licensing officials (www.nascla.org). If the salesperson is reluctant to give you this information, consider it a red flag and find another company to consider.”

< >Contractor's name

Street address (no P.O. Box)

Telephone number

Contractor's license number

State that issued the license

Name under which the license is filedhttp://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/homes/rea...

Protection Plus Solutions provides all of this information to the consumer after a thorough background check has been conducted. You can send out a copy of the ID badge of your sales rep or technician to your customer via a secured online email that shows they’re crime free to enter their home or office or you can direct them to our website or yours to verify information about them.

Many adds posted by Alarm company’s say: “Protect Your Family And Home With a Special Offer on Monitored Security Systems.” But, what about the safety of the consumer when you send out a Sales Rep or Technician to sell or install their system? Are you SURE that you’re running the necessary background check to insure their safety? If you’re NOT contact us.  We can make sure your company is compliant and your customers are safe.

Claudia Bernard

CEO- Protection Plus Solutions

www.protectionplussolutions.com 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Since my company Protection Plus Solutions is in the background screening industry, and the comment came up about Florida law, I felt it was important to provide the list of state regulations as it pertains to Alarm Licensing Requirements. 

http://www.kirschenbaumesq.com/alarmlicreqstate.htm

While some states have specific mandates regarding background screening requirements of Alarm companies and service contractors, others do not. This is why it is imperative that Alarm companies provide the safest and most secure background screening service in the industry for their valued customers. After all, these service technicians hired are going into your customer’s homes or businesses.

Also the Federal Trade Commission posts specific guidelines for consumers regarding the safety and security home owners need to be aware of when an alarm salesman does knock on their door. There are many scam artists out there that prey on alarm companies who do not provide a thorough background check and thus get inside customers homes or businesses.

This is what’s stated on the FTC website: “Before you do business with anyone selling a home security or alarm system, whether they come to your door or you seek them out, the FTC and your state Attorney General urge you to ask potential contractors for the following information. Use it to check out the alarm company with the appropriate authorities: your state Attorney General (www.naag.org), local consumer protection agency (www.consumeraction.gov), Better Business Bureau (www.bbb.org), and state licensing officials (www.nascla.org). If the salesperson is reluctant to give you this information, consider it a red flag and find another company to consider.”

< >Contractor's name

Street address (no P.O. Box)

Telephone number

Contractor's license number

State that issued the license

Name under which the license is filedhttp://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/homes/rea...

Protection Plus Solutions provides all of this information to the consumer after a thorough background check has been conducted. You can send out a copy of the ID badge of your sales rep or technician to your customer via a secured online email that shows they’re crime free to enter their home or office or you can direct them to our website or yours to verify information about them.

Many adds posted by Alarm company’s say: “Protect Your Family And Home With a Special Offer on Monitored Security Systems.” But, what about the safety of the consumer when you send out a Sales Rep or Technician to sell or install their system? Are you SURE that you’re running the necessary background check to insure their safety? If you’re NOT sure contact us we can make sure your company is compliant and your customers are safe.

Claudia Bernard

CEO- Protection Plus Solutions

www.protectionplussolutions.com