DPS: Texas crime database poorly updated by counties

AUSTIN (AP) - Too many Texas counties are still doing a poor job of reporting criminal information to the state's crime database.

DPS says counties who did poorly in 2004 promised to do better but four years later, their numbers are still falling short.

In 1993, Texas began requiring counties to report criminal information to DPS, but lawmakers didn't authorize funding or penalties for noncompliance.

The Dallas Morning News reports inadequate information in the database means gaps for officials who conduct background checks on
schoolteachers and volunteers who work with children.

The poorly updated state crime database also can affect background checks run by employers on job applicants and landlords checking on prospective tenants.

Officials said job-seekers who had become frustrated because their acquittals or charge dismissals are not in the database are complaining.

DPS -- as a result -- increased the number of employees in its error resolution unit from 10 to 20.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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