Security Clearance Denial

Registered Sex Offender Denied Clearance

Every once in a while, I run across an appeals case that makes me shake my head and wonder why on earth they tried applying for a job that required a security clearance. This particular one takes the cake. The applicant was initially denied clearance eligibility by the DoD based on concerns involving criminal conduct, sexual behavior, and alcohol abuse. He subsequently appealed to the Defense Office of Hearing and Appeals (DOHA). Here are the highlights of the case.

From 2011-13 the applicant was a cadet and football player at a military academy. During his time there, he was involved in multiple incidents of sexual assault and alcohol abuse. He was eventually court martialed and dismissed from the academy. As a result, he was also required to register as a sex offender in his state of residence. In 2019, he was involved in punching a ride-share driver in the face after out drinking with friends. The police responded and the applicant refused to cooperate with their inquiries. He was arrested for assault, resisting arrest, and obstruction.

During his appeals hearing, the applicant submitted a letter from a clinical social worker he had sought counseling from. The letter downplayed the seriousness of his behavior, and it clearly showed that the applicant had not been entirely candid with social worker about his past. Taking this and the applicant’s refusal to accept full responsibility for his behavior into consideration, the DOHA judge found the criminal, sexual, and alcohol concerns were not mitigated – clearance eligibility was denied.

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