Cleveland 19 investigates city hiring practices

Cleveland 19 investigates city hiring practices
(Source: KAIT-TV)

CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - After two recent high-profile cases of city employees being charged with violent and even deadly crimes, Cleveland 19 started investigating The City of Cleveland’s hiring practices.

Why are so many violent offenders working for the city of Cleveland? (part 1)
Cleveland's 2nd Chance program under scrutiny following brutally violent crimes (part 2)

Last year, Lance Mason, the city’s former Minority Business Development Administrator, was arrested and with the murder of his ex-wife Aisha Fraser. Four years before that, he was convicted of attempted felonious assault, but the city still hired him in 2017. He was fired after the most recent arrest.

Last month former custodial worker, Cardell Boyd was arrested and charged with attempted murder, felonious assault, domestic violence, attempted aggravated arson and abduction.

He had been working for the city nearly 4 years and has a violent past, including convictions for drug trafficking, menacing by stalking, sexual battery, and burglary. Boyd was fired after last month’s arrest.

The city has more than 8,100 employees. Cleveland 19 searched the criminal records for about 2,200 of them and found more than 100 with felony convictions working for the city right now.

They were hired under the city’s “second chance” program. It allows convicted felons to get jobs with the city.

City Councilman Mike Polensek admits council doesn’t have much of a say when it comes to hiring. He also believes in second chances, but he questions the city’s methods.

“As long as common sense is in place, the city will be fine and our citizens will be protected,” he said.

Cleveland 19 asked if common sense was in place. Polensek responded: “I can’t tell you if it is or not, because there’s no way for me to know that.”

Tonight at 11, we’ll show you what our investigation uncovered and why some are asking for a change in the hiring policy.

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