Criminal History Challenged But Still Going For It ....here Is My Story

Topic 6790 | Page 1

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Craig N.'s Comment
member avatar

So hi.. names Craig. I find myself late in life (50 years old) craving the open road. I have dreamed about OTR trucking for many years. Regional would be okay too as long it has a sleeper.. those day cabs are just goofy looking. I have always dreamed about being an owner operator with a sweet Peter built or old school Freightliner cab over You all know what I'm talking bout. I drove in the military 28 years ago. I lived in my deuce for months and logged some 80k miles that year in old Alpha 15. I consider myself to be extremely skilled at driving and enjoy a heightened sense of awareness due to thirty years of riding high performance street bikes. Any way , I have felony convictions. None of which resulted in any prison time. Probation and some local jail time only. I am currently working on having the latest one which is about 3.5 years old dismissed or reduced to a misdemeanor, my state allows for a one time felony relief by your judge if you make it through your probation without violating which I have. So that leaves me with two older ones, a 7 year old for stolen property and a 26 year old one for assault. I know this isn't going to be easy. I realize that employers may just overlook me as an applicant because of my past but I have try. I cannot go on lingering in this dead end job I currently have selling tires. I am unappreciated underpaid and have no benefits for me or my lovely wife. I am tired of working so hard only to just scrape buy. My short term goals consist of seeing my judge reduce this current felony, obtain a CDL permit/pass the written tests and get my DOT card. I have been discouraged by people saying felons can't drive Semi's but I refuse to just give up. I believe I have made mistakes but I am still of good character. I will go at this with a vengeance until some one or something tells me flat out NO ONE WILL EVER HIRE YOU BECAUSE OF YOUR FELONIES! Is there any one out there who is going to tell me this definitively? I need to know. Some things I read online say it is possible but difficult, others say absolutely no way , others say no sweat just be honest. So any way here I go...... January 4th 2015

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Owner Operator:

An owner-operator is a driver who either owns or leases the truck they are driving. A self-employed driver.

Day Cab:

A tractor which does not have a sleeper berth attached to it. Normally used for local routes where drivers go home every night.

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Trevor D.'s Comment
member avatar

Has the newest felony 3.5 years ago been cleared from your record yet? And if cleared, has it been expunged? This may matter due to companies that do except felons usually have a minimum of 5 years since the conviction date.

So I'll tell you about me and what I know. May or may not help. Plan to post a thread eventually to share what I do know with others in hope to provide insight.

I'm half your age nearly, at 28 and have been considering driving as a long term career for a year now. Problem is, as you, I also had run-ins with the law... Matter a fact, quite a few between the ages of 18 and then again I was 21/22. I happened to rack up 4 felony charges in total thru those years including 2nd degree burglary and possession of a stolen motor vehicle.... Not done yet, even got a DUI that was dropped to a neg driving. Spent about 2 years of my life between jails and prison. Now, no one persons case is the same and as goes the reasons companies that due hire felons go by a case by case scenario.

About a year ago I moved and with it had to leave my job of 4 years behind. Did this for my kids because I didn't have any family where I was. Well when I got to my current state I had a heck if a time getting a job.(denied,denied,denied...background)I thought about driving a truck years before but dismissed because like you everything I read or people that I talked to said its unlikely. The only reason I was even considering driving as an option is because my dad has been driving for con-way for years and has made a pretty good living.

Anyways, for whatever reason I started looking into it and really looking at the different companies and what there policies and guidelines where for criminal backgrounds. To my surprise I found several companies that in fact did hire felons with the exception that the crimes committed where at least 5 years behind them. Now some companies are different they have ones that say 7 yrs... 10yrs... NEVER! ect.. But even if they do hire felons its case by case and you have to be totally honest and up front with them. My latest felony is 7yrs behind me as of next month. The first company I was going to go with is prime. If you review there hiring guidelines they will consider you for employment with felonies as long as you can meet the conditions for obtaining a TWIC card.. You can find the info here: http://www.tsa.gov/stakeholders/frequently-asked-questions-0#disqualification

Under: Disqualification, Waivers, And Appeals --> What can disqualify me from getting a TWIC?

truck driver job application disqualifying criminal offensestruck driver job application disqualifying criminal offensesAbove are screen shots i took with my phone for quick viewing, but definatly check out the website.

But there are plenty of others such as tmc which is a flatbed company, there guidelines on there website say 7yrs(last time I checked) but I found Craigslist postings that contradicted that saying only 5. Called to confirm and its true, they are 5 years as well.

I wanted to see if I could get around going to prime BC that would mean I would have to leave from home for training. And at the moment things are looking great. I applied at Schneider last month for there paid cdl training position at a school that's close to me. Filling out the application was painful putting down all my history, dates, reasons, jail terms, prison terms, fine information, ect. ect... Surely I was out of my mind... I must be kidding myself, right? No way they will except me I mean look at the crap I pulled. Well I completed the app and hit submit.. Screw it, what where they gonna tell me? "No" ... Like I've never heard that one before?! rofl-3.gif

Well I was trying to act like it didn't matter to get through the application, but between me and you, I was nervous as s*##. Because for the last year this is all I wanted.

Took em two weeks! TWO FREAKING WEEKS! to get back to me, but they did. I had an interview with a recruiter and had to go over every detail of my criminal and driving background. I was sure as anything I was screwed by the time we got done. She called me back a few days later.... BAM!!! Conditional offer of employment! wtf.gif Everything is still on schedule. Got a call new years eve and was advised to come in. Went to the Gary,IN operations center for Schneider on the new years day and signed my training commitment contract(what a way to start the new year).

Anyways Craig, all is not lost. Don't let no one tell you what you can't do. Put in the work, research the companies, apply. The only thing I would be concerned about is the felony 3.5 years ago. But if its cleared from your record, then you are not legally required to put such information down. Nor should anyone have access to it other then state & federal government's.(you will need to do your due diligence here and make sure it is removed from employers to see.) In any case your only 1.5yrs away from the 5yr mark. And you never know there may be companies that will still work with you. You gotta try tho. But yes you can still be a truck driver with felonies.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

BMI:

Body mass index (BMI)

BMI is a formula that uses weight and height to estimate body fat. For most people, BMI provides a reasonable estimate of body fat. The BMI's biggest weakness is that it doesn't consider individual factors such as bone or muscle mass. BMI may:

  • Underestimate body fat for older adults or other people with low muscle mass
  • Overestimate body fat for people who are very muscular and physically fit

It's quite common, especially for men, to fall into the "overweight" category if you happen to be stronger than average. If you're pretty strong but in good shape then pay no attention.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

DUI:

Driving Under the Influence

Craig N.'s Comment
member avatar

What a great and uplifting response Trevor.. thank you. I will keep you posted.

Crystal S.'s Comment
member avatar

Well?!? I'm in a similar situation and just wondering how things turned out? 2 felonies 14 misdemeanors.... Most when I was younger. Some serious prison time but its been more than 7 years since that conviction.

Jarod(Red)'s Comment
member avatar

So hi.. names Craig. I find myself late in life (50 years old) craving the open road. I have dreamed about OTR trucking for many years. Regional would be okay too as long it has a sleeper.. those day cabs are just goofy looking. I have always dreamed about being an owner operator with a sweet Peter built or old school Freightliner cab over You all know what I'm talking bout. I drove in the military 28 years ago. I lived in my deuce for months and logged some 80k miles that year in old Alpha 15. I consider myself to be extremely skilled at driving and enjoy a heightened sense of awareness due to thirty years of riding high performance street bikes. Any way , I have felony convictions. None of which resulted in any prison time. Probation and some local jail time only. I am currently working on having the latest one which is about 3.5 years old dismissed or reduced to a misdemeanor, my state allows for a one time felony relief by your judge if you make it through your probation without violating which I have. So that leaves me with two older ones, a 7 year old for stolen property and a 26 year old one for assault. I know this isn't going to be easy. I realize that employers may just overlook me as an applicant because of my past but I have try. I cannot go on lingering in this dead end job I currently have selling tires. I am unappreciated underpaid and have no benefits for me or my lovely wife. I am tired of working so hard only to just scrape buy. My short term goals consist of seeing my judge reduce this current felony, obtain a CDL permit/pass the written tests and get my DOT card. I have been discouraged by people saying felons can't drive Semi's but I refuse to just give up. I believe I have made mistakes but I am still of good character. I will go at this with a vengeance until some one or something tells me flat out NO ONE WILL EVER HIRE YOU BECAUSE OF YOUR FELONIES! Is there any one out there who is going to tell me this definitively? I need to know. Some things I read online say it is possible but difficult, others say absolutely no way , others say no sweat just be honest. So any way here I go...... January 4th 2015

I got accepted by Swift and I had a Class D Felony Check Deception charge in 2007, and they accepted me to training, I know their policy is that it can't be a dealing of drugs and must be 5 years ago or longer.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Owner Operator:

An owner-operator is a driver who either owns or leases the truck they are driving. A self-employed driver.

Day Cab:

A tractor which does not have a sleeper berth attached to it. Normally used for local routes where drivers go home every night.

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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