Obtaining Security Clearance

Will 11 Arrests Prevent You from Obtaining a Security Clearance?

This Defense Office of Hearing and Appeals (DOHA) from a few months ago case caught my eye due to the extensive criminal history of the applicant and how he thought he would be eligible for a security clearance. Considering his background, he was initially denied eligibility by the DoD based on concerns involving criminal conduct, alcohol use, illegal drug use, and personal conduct. Here are the highlights in his appeal:

The applicant was arrested eleven times between 1992 and 2021 and charged with robbery, assault, domestic violence, obstruction, bad checks, alcohol in public, possession of marijuana, driving on a suspended license, and driving under the influence multiple times. His last arrest for DUI in 2021 resulted in being put on probation until 2024. He failed to list half of the charges on his SF-86 or disclose them in the interview with the background investigator. He also listed marijuana use from 1990 to 2016, however, during his interview he admitted to using marijuana after filling out the questionnaire up until 2022. He also told the investigator he still hung out with friends who used marijuana.

Despite the applicant’s assertions that he no longer used drugs, no longer drank alcohol, did not intentionally withhold information, and would not engage in any future criminal activity, the DOHA judge did not find his claims credible. Serious concerns were still present on his honesty, reliability and trustworthiness – clearance eligibility denied. You can read the entire case summary here.