In 2012, 14 year old Hope Cheston of Clayton County, Ga. was sexually assaulted by an armed security guard at an apartment complex near Atlanta while visiting a friend, according to court records.

The security guard, Brand Lamar Zachary, was convicted of statutory rape and is serving a 20-year prison sentence, according to online prison records.

The verdict was against Crime Prevention Agency, the security company that employed Zahary. However, the apartment complex, HACC Pointe South, and property management company, Hammond Residential Group, were all dismissed from the lawsuit, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

“The jury made a statement heard around the world of background screening,” said Bryan Mower, president of Western Reporting Inc. a national accredited employment/tenant screening company.”The message loud and clear is compliance in all aspects of screening.”

Mower stated that for too long companies have taken risks on not conducting credible criminal background checks for new employees. “the game has changed, said Mower. “And the result can now cost companies billions. It is now more imperative than ever for human resource management personal as well as property management companies to make sure background checks are compliant with federal laws and regulations.”

Western Reporting Inc. is the most trusted background screening company in the industry and in over 22 years of business, has never been involved in criminal or civil litigation at any level.