Ex-felon Robert Chad Lind speaks out about how the Montana Department of Justice and Corrections sold his dismissed felony records to third party vendors.
Robert Chad Lind was convicted for selling marijuana at the age of 18 in 1993. He pled guilty for his crime and was given a deferred sentence for two years. The Department of Corrections, Human Services, Probation and Parole Billings Montana ordered that if his record stayed clean for two years, he would be allowed to withdraw his guilty plea and all charges against him would be dismissed. In addition, all data records relating to his case will remain confidential. In June 1995, his criminal charges were dropped and dismissed. In addition, all public access to his information will be held confidential and can be obtained only by a District Court Order.
In 2000 Robert Chad found a new passion for computers and started moonlighting computer jobs. In 2006 he began working full time as a Corporate Desktop Support Analyst in the Seattle WA, area. In 2009 he went on to work for a software giant in Redmond WA.
Robert Chad returned to Montana in 2012 and soon after continued working as a Security Support Analyst in November of 2012. After 6 months he was terminated without cause and from June of 2013 to July 2014 has been applying for many jobs in his field without any success.
In July 2014, Robert Chad accepted a position in a non-related field and in the first week he was pulled out of training and confronted by his answer of, “NO” on his job application, regarding felony history by his HR department. He was informed they had received “confidential” information from an independent vendor regarding his felony. He was shocked, embarrassed and speechless. Robert Chad contacted DOJ and DOC of MT and was informed his record was sealed, the felony charges dismissed and this information should not have been disclosed under the plea agreement.
His new employer received formal documentation from DOJ of MT and Robert Chad retained his employment. It’s not clear if Robert Chad was overlooked by dozens of IT employers due to this but with 14 years of experience it appears that due to this information being made available to potential employers this has interfered with any opportunity for Robert Chad to attain reasonable employment in his field of choice. He is currently seeking offers for legal representation.