Columbus and Dayton Sue Ohio AG for “Deficient” Background Check System

Background Screening News

Written By ESR News Blog Editor Thomas Ahearn

In November 2020, Ohio’s capital city, Columbus, and the city of Dayton filed a lawsuit that claimed a division of the state attorney general’s (AG) office failed to report criminal conviction information into state and federal background check databases that left them “dangerously deficient,” Courthouse News Service reported.

The complaint filed against Attorney General Dave Yost’s office and Ohio’s Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation cited news and government reports that found that a minimum of 27 percent of Ohio felony convictions in 2015 were not reported to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS).

The complaint filed in Franklin County court on November 9, 2020, also stated that gaps in the state database were described by bureau employees as a “widespread issue” as early as 2012. The bureau launched a project that was supposed to fix a part of the problem but it was canceled in 2014, according to the complaint.

The plaintiffs are asking for a finding that the bureau is “in default of its obligations” and should “promptly fulfill their mandatory, nondiscretionary legal obligations to procure disqualifying criminal history and other relevant information pertaining to all persons convicted of relevant crimes,” Courthouse News Service reported.

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