TARGET 8 background checks Columbia Uber drivers

8 months 4 hours 5 minutes ago Wednesday, May 24 2017 May 24, 2017 Wednesday, May 24, 2017 6:57:00 PM CDT May 24, 2017 in Target 8
By: Madeline Odle, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - A Target 8 investigation background checked Columbia Uber drivers and took a closer look at the ride-share company’s safety regulations.

In the past year, several states have implemented stricter background check regulations. In Massachusetts, harsher regulations denied or weeded out more than 8,000 drivers statewide. According to CNN, More than 1,500 drivers were rejected for a violent crime charge. Other reasons for denial included various driving offenses, felony convictions, and sex, abuse and exploitation. The state also identified 51 sex offenders.

In light of this, the Target 8 team took a look at how thoroughly vetted Uber drivers are in Columbia.

Method

KOMU 8 News filed an open records request with the city, asking for the first and last names, and birth dates of currently licensed Uber drivers.

The city released that information for 331 Uber drivers.

The Target 8 team used Missouri CaseNet to background check the drivers, looking for records that matched the names and birth dates of the drivers on the list.

We looked back 10 years for the purpose of this investigation and focused only on criminal and driving histories.  

We had to redact 50 names from our data because we were not able to find records confirming the full birth date for charges matching the full name and birth year. Since we couldn’t confirm or deny the charges we found were in fact for the driver on our list, we decided to redact these names from our final analysis.

We ended up with 281 names of drivers in our final data set.

Findings

Out of 281 registered Uber drivers, 165 had a clean criminal and driving history.

The Uber drivers with violations on their criminal and driving histories in the past decade break down to the following:



There were no drivers we found with DUI charges, felonies or violent crime convictions.

Uber Background Check Regulations

The company requires every driver pass a background check before becoming a driver. According to Uber’s website, here are things that would cause a person to fail the background check:

Criminal history:

  • Any of the following in the last 7 years:
    • A felony
    • Any driving-related offenses
    • Violent crimes
    • Sexual offenses
    • Child abuse or endangerment

Driving history:

  • Any of the following in the last 7 years:
    • DUI or drug-related driving offenses
    • Speeding 100+ MPH
    • Reckless driving, street racing or speed contest
  • Any of the following in the last 3 years:
    • Driving on a suspended, revoked lisence or insurance
  • Any more than 3 of the following in the last 3 years:
    • Non-fatal accidents
    • Moving violations
    • Speeding tickets
    • Traffic light violations

All 281 drivers currently licensed to drive with Uber in Columbia passed by the above standards.

According to Uber’s website, the company will rerun background checks on its drivers anywhere between 6 and 12 months apart. The company will deactivate a driver if that person does not pass in a subsequent background check.

City Response

KOMU 8 News spoke with Janice Finley, Business Services Manager for the City of Columbia, about the background checks the city runs independently of those done by Uber.

“If there’s been a felony conviction within the last 10 years, a misdemeanor for stealing, something that’s relevant. If they’ve had their driver's license revoked due to driving while intoxicated, drugs or excessive speed violations,” Finley said. “That’s when we deny the applicant a license.”

Finley said for the most part applicants have passed the city’s background checks. A few people have been denied, and nobody has had a license revoked.

“Well they have to renew annually, so every year we do a background check on the TNO applicant,” Finley said. “We have not revoked any licenses since they’ve been issued.”

New Missouri Law

According to Finley, starting August, Uber licensing will be handled by the state, not by individual cities as it is now.

HB 130 will allow ride-share companies, like Uber and Lyft, to spread across all of Missouri by creating statewide regulations and licensing.

Rather than individual cities running background checks and providing licensing, the state will be responsible for this, allowing the drivers to operate in any part of the state without needing to be individually licensed in those areas.

Under the new law, rideshare companies will be required to register with the Missouri Department of Revenue in order to operate in the state.

The scope of background check regulations under HB 130 mirrors Uber's in terms of how far back the checks go, and what convictions the company looks for.




 

More News

Grid
List
ST. LOUIS - Governor Greitens' attorney said Friday the rumors about Greitens possibly resigning hold "zero truth". Rumors of... More >>
3 days ago Friday, January 19 2018 Jan 19, 2018 Friday, January 19, 2018 1:21:00 PM CST January 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Property restrictions based on race and ethnicity are not a thing of the past, in fact, they can... More >>
3 days ago Friday, January 19 2018 Jan 19, 2018 Friday, January 19, 2018 11:37:00 AM CST January 19, 2018 in News
SEDALIA (AP) — An 18-year-old staying at a Missouri ranch for homeless boys has been charged with killing a woman... More >>
3 days ago Friday, January 19 2018 Jan 19, 2018 Friday, January 19, 2018 9:56:00 AM CST January 19, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — Two Kansas City brothers have been charged with killing a man and then dumping his... More >>
4 days ago Friday, January 19 2018 Jan 19, 2018 Friday, January 19, 2018 9:11:00 AM CST January 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - "From the early 1900s to the 1960s, the Sharp End business district was a city within a city... More >>
4 days ago Friday, January 19 2018 Jan 19, 2018 Friday, January 19, 2018 7:43:00 AM CST January 19, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A Kansas City man who was thousands of dollars in debt from a drunken driving... More >>
4 days ago Friday, January 19 2018 Jan 19, 2018 Friday, January 19, 2018 5:32:30 AM CST January 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Deputies booked two men into the Boone County Jail on suspicion of various charges, including an apparent plan... More >>
4 days ago Thursday, January 18 2018 Jan 18, 2018 Thursday, January 18, 2018 10:45:00 PM CST January 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – Some students were “striving” for a new learning experience Thursday night. Parents of students with autism gathered... More >>
4 days ago Thursday, January 18 2018 Jan 18, 2018 Thursday, January 18, 2018 7:22:00 PM CST January 18, 2018 in News
FULTON - The Callaway County Sheriff’s Office is using more than $16,000 seized during a 2013 drug investigation for a... More >>
4 days ago Thursday, January 18 2018 Jan 18, 2018 Thursday, January 18, 2018 7:08:00 PM CST January 18, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Several department directors for Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens have finally won Senate confirmation for their... More >>
4 days ago Thursday, January 18 2018 Jan 18, 2018 Thursday, January 18, 2018 5:01:08 PM CST January 18, 2018 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Amazon has announced its list of 20 cities for a second headquarters, and both big... More >>
4 days ago Thursday, January 18 2018 Jan 18, 2018 Thursday, January 18, 2018 4:57:51 PM CST January 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA- State-of-the-art technology is coming to the Columbia Fire Department, and improving many facets that help firefighters do their jobs.... More >>
4 days ago Thursday, January 18 2018 Jan 18, 2018 Thursday, January 18, 2018 4:31:00 PM CST January 18, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – This season’s frigid temperatures mean a rise in frozen pipes around the city. Lucia Bourgeois, communications specialist... More >>
4 days ago Thursday, January 18 2018 Jan 18, 2018 Thursday, January 18, 2018 3:48:00 PM CST January 18, 2018 in News
MACON - Crews tore down a 100-year-old piece of Macon's history Thursday. Four years ago, courts condemned the old Macon... More >>
4 days ago Thursday, January 18 2018 Jan 18, 2018 Thursday, January 18, 2018 2:07:00 PM CST January 18, 2018 in Top Stories
JEFFERSON CITY - Governor Eric Greitens released an outline of his plan for state tax reform on Thursday. The outline... More >>
4 days ago Thursday, January 18 2018 Jan 18, 2018 Thursday, January 18, 2018 1:28:00 PM CST January 18, 2018 in News
CAMDEN COUNTY - A former sheriff's deputy already facing charges of child pornography and child molestation faces more charges in... More >>
4 days ago Thursday, January 18 2018 Jan 18, 2018 Thursday, January 18, 2018 12:47:00 PM CST January 18, 2018 in Top Stories
MONTGOMERY COUNTY - One man was hospitalized after a car driving the wrong way crashed into his vehicle, according to... More >>
4 days ago Thursday, January 18 2018 Jan 18, 2018 Thursday, January 18, 2018 12:37:00 PM CST January 18, 2018 in News
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) — A Missouri Department of Corrections employee is charged with using a hidden camera to film... More >>
5 days ago Thursday, January 18 2018 Jan 18, 2018 Thursday, January 18, 2018 8:14:00 AM CST January 18, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 33°
10am 33°
11am 34°
12pm 36°
1pm 37°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

9:00a
Megyn Kelly TODAY
10:00a
Today with Kathie Lee & Hoda
11:00a
Rachael Ray
9:00a
The Steve Wilkos Show
10:00a
Jerry Springer
11:00a
Jerry Springer

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
Ellen's Game of Games
8:00p
This Is Us
9:01p
Chicago Med
7:00p
The Flash
8:00p
Black Lightning
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld