A Louisiana taxi company has lost its taxi license after it was discovered that the company employed a convicted rapist to operate one of its vehicles. According to police investigating the incident, the driver was denied a license to operate vehicles for hire after a background check discovered that he was a registered sex offender.
The investigation began once local police were informed that one of the taxi service’s drivers was operating without a license. Upon looking into the matter more closely, the police learned that the driver was a registered sex offender with a third-degree rape conviction and had previously applied and been denied a license by the vehicle for hire office.
Louisiana law prohibits many sex offenders from acquiring licenses to operate a vehicle for hire and companies operating these services from employing them. This law was passed after a 12-year-old boy was kidnapped and murdered in 2010 by a cab driver who was also a sex offender. This has led to charges against the unlicensed taxi driver for violating this prohibition on employment for certain sex offenders.
According to the owner of the taxi company, it only learned about the driver’s conviction after the fact. The company has claimed that the individual was allowed to drive after presenting a receipt from the vehicle for hire office, which would perform a background check as a condition of approval, and due to the backlog of approvals resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, he did not know that it was denied. The owner of the company further claimed that his insurance provider had reassured him that a receipt of payment for the application was enough to allow the driver to begin working.
However, the city’s police department disagreed and revoked the company’s vehicle for hire license, which is required to operate a taxi cab company. The company appealed this decision to the city council, which voted unanimously to uphold the license revocation finding that the fault for employing a sex offender lies with the employer.
As this incident shows, a receipt for a background check does not suffice in place of a completed background check. It is crucial to perform a background check to ensure the safety of property, patrons, and employees alike, particularly in cases that require a significant degree of trust. This is why it is important to partner with a background check provider you can trust.
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