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Proposed Law Would Require Background Checks for Delivery Workers, Following Boca Murder

Background checks could soon be required for delivery employees across our state, following the murder last summer of a 75-year-old Boca Raton woman.

Republican State Representative Mike Caruso, of Delray Beach, filed a proposal (HB 1129) this week that would make it mandatory for all home delivery workers to undergo background checks including a search of a multi-state criminal database, as well as and a search of the National Sex Offender Public Website, which is maintained by the U.S. Department of Justice.

The checks would be required “regardless of whether such person, employee, or agent intends to enter a consumer’s home.”

Caruso’s proposal would still allow deliveries to be made before background screening is completed, although delivery workers in those cases would have to be supervised while they are with customers. They would also not be allowed to enter homes.

The proposal is named after Boca Raton resident Evelyn Udell, who died last August, one day after she was beaten with a mallet, doused in a chemical, and then set on fire.

The suspect, 21-year-old Jorge Dupre Lachazo, was at the victim’s house to deliver and install a new washer and dryer. He is facing charges of first-degree murder with a weapon, in addition to burglary, robbery, and first-degree arson.

Udell’s family has filed a lawsuit against retailer Best Buy, J.B. Hunt Transport and XM Delivery, a Hialeah company that subcontracted the delivery job.

The bill will be considered during the legislative session that begins on January 14.