Jerome Planter, a part-time school security guard working for the New Rochelle Board of Education, did not live in New Rochelle at the time he applied for a job through the New Rochelle Municipal Service Commission in 2008 as required for civil servants in New Rochelle. Planter's official start date was November 20, 2008. To qualify, Planter claimed to reside on Drake Avenue in New Rochelle when he actually resided in Co-Op City in the Bronx. Any paperwork presented to the Civil Service Commission at the time of his hire would have been falsified.
Knowledgeable sources have told Talk of the Sound that school district employees are routinely hired to work for the school district without background checks. As a result, the district has hired and currently employees people who have criminal records. Other positions which require residence prior to hiring, namely certain civil service positions, are routinely filled by individuals who do not live in New Rochelle at least four months prior to their hiring. Likewise, positions that require a high school diploma or GED are filled with people who do not meet even this minimal qualifications.
The issue of background checks has come in the Jose Martinez case where sources tell Talk of the Sound the crop of new hires in 2007, when Martinez was hired, did not complete background checks prior to their start date in September 2007.
The issue of problems with the Civil Service Commission have been well documented by Talk of the Sound.
Records obtained by Talk of the Sound from the New York City Board of Elections indicate that Planter lived at Co-Op City in the Bronx, NY (4180 Hutchison River Parkway, Bronx, NY) in the months prior to his hiring, in violation of Civil Service requirements.
Planter is still listed in the phone book as residing in Co-Op City in the Bronx, currently at 4200 Hutchison River Parkway, Bronx, NY).
The case is nearly identical to the Geeta Singh case which Talk of the Sound reported in September. Singh is another part-time school security guard working for the New Rochelle Board of Education. In the Singh case, the Board of Education flatly ignored overwhelming evidence that Singh lied on his job application and used falsified residency records from the widow of a former supervisor at the College of New Rochelle.
Sources tell Talk of the Sound that Planter, like Singh used the address of a work colleague from the College of New Rochelle. Planter claimed to live at a house at 123 Drake Avenue in New Rochelle owned by Upton Gordon. A visit to that location showed no evidence that Planter resided at 123 Drake Avenue. A search of City of New Rochelle property records confirmed that the property at 123 Drake Avenue is owned by Upton Gordan.