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Spokesperson Arrested, DCF Looking At Screening Process

February 4th, 2008 by flanews

A Department of Children and Families Spokesman, arrested on child pornography charges, had a record. Now, DCF is reviewing its background check policy. As Whitney Ray tell us, former DCF spokesperson Al Zimmermans application didnt reflect his criminal record and he listed Governor Charlie Crist as a reference.

Hear it here: Spokesperson Arrested, DCF Looking At Screening Process

Al Zimmerman was the face for the Department of Children and Families, now Investigators say hes a reminder that child predators come from all walks of life.
The attorney generals cyber campaign helped catch Zimmerman, who is accused of offering teens money to photograph them performing sex acts.

Weve seen a lot of these people dont have prior records theres really no way to predict when this behavior is going to appear in an individual you may know, Sandy Copes, a spokesperson for the attorney general said.

Police arrested the former DCF spokesperson last week on eight counts of using a child in a sexual performance. It wasnt the first time Zimmerman was arrested.
In 1993 Zimmerman was arrested for DUI, he was also charged in 1998 and 2003 for bad checks. DCF hired Zimmerman In 2005. At the time the Department didnt require fingerprinting for background checks on people applying for administration positions. Lt. Governor Jeff Kottkamp said Zimmermans arrest could lead to investigations in other departments.

We dont have all the facts right now to know how many people have been hired or what sort of procedures have been in place not just in DCF, but in any critical area, Kottkamp said.

Zimmermans resume was pretty impressive. Among his references, Governor Charlie Crist, who at the time was the states attorney general. DCF is reviewing its background check policy. Zimmerman was release on 120,000 dollars bail

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