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Legal-Guru
Legal-Guru, Criminal Justice Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
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Experience:  Experienced Criminal Trial Attorney since 1998.
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My small company hired a consultant in New Orleans. As part

Customer Question

My small company hired a consultant in New Orleans. As part of this compensation, he was given a company car to drive with a 'real-time GPS' tracking device. He signed our very comprehensive company vehicle policy. On Friday, I told him that his services were no longer needed and that one of our employees was going to pick up the company vehicle at his home. The GPS tracking device was showing the vehicle parked in his driveway. Apparently, he had taken the GPS device out of the company car, plugged the device into a car that was in his driveway and our car and the former consultant is nowhere to be found. We contacted the police who went with our employee to his home to see that the car was missing and while they did file a report, the police said that they needed his DOB to file a warrant for his arrest?
QUESTION1: is a DOB really needed? If so, is there a simple way to find this online?
QUESTION2: If he shows up this coming week and tries to simply return the car, what are my options if I want to pursue charges?
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Legal-Guru replied 11 months ago.
Welcome back to JustAnswer.

"Is a DOB really needed?"

That is not a legal requirement, but it may be a policy requirement of the NOPD or Orleans Parish DA. The reason for having unique identifiers, such as DOB and SSN, on the warrant are so as to not arrest the wrong person which no one wants to do and could expose the police and/or DA to liability.

"If so, is there a simple way to find this online?"

None that I am aware of. The police have more tools available to find a person's date of birth than a private citizen does. They have access to DMV, utility, criminal justice, and other records that are likely to contain a person's date of birth. I have never heard of a citizen needing to provide a DOB before charges could be filed. You may want to ask to speak to a NOPD supervisor about this. They should have ways to locate his DOB assuming you have an accurate name and address.

If he shows up this coming week and tries to simply return the car, what are my options if I want to pursue charges?

You can still ask the police and prosecutors to pursue charges if he returns the car, but from a practical perspective if he offers to return the car undamaged (whether you accept it or not) before criminal charges are filed, they are less likely to do so simply because (1) they have more serious cases (i.e., murders, rapes, etc) on their plate, and (2) returning or offering to return the vehicle makes it more difficult to prove his criminal intent to embezzle the car.
Customer: replied 11 months ago.


Do you mean that even though the company would want to pursue criminal charges that the prosecutor can simply deny to charge this person? I am not saying that this should go to the top of their list (of course not), however, how can they simply choose not to pursue charges for car theft? Regarding the criminal intent, the policy officer who took the report was able to see and wrote down the text messages from this person saying that the car was at his house. The police officer tried to call this person when he arrived at his home and left a message saying that he 'must be mistaken' and to return the car immediately. This was on Friday.

Expert:  Legal-Guru replied 11 months ago.
"Do you mean that even though the company would want to pursue criminal charges that the prosecutor can simply deny to charge this person?"

Absolutely. Charging decisions are possibly the most important function of a prosecutor. A criminal charge is the state versus the defendant not the victim of the offense versus the defendant.

The company can civilly sue their contractor if they choose, but whether the state of Louisiana criminally prosecutes a person is always up to the local prosecutor's office. In this case that would be the Orleans Parish District Attorney. That is what they are elected to do. Realistically, criminal prosecution is not a decision that could ultimately be left to private individuals. As soon as you charged someone with a crime they would do the same to you.

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