AL legislators considering bill to regulate bounty hunters

Published: May. 8, 2015 at 9:01 PM CDT|Updated: Jun. 5, 2015 at 9:51 PM CDT
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HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - Bail agents, those who help get you out of jail when bond is posted, are required to pass a background check before taking the job.

Recovery agents, or as some call them, "bounty hunters" are not held to the same scrutiny. Senate Bill 384 is aiming to change that and the bill will go before legislators next week.
Victor Howard, owner of Discount Bail Bonds in Huntsville, and the Alabama Bail Bond Association supports the bill.

"The part that you have to be careful of as an owner is who you hire as your recovery agents," said Howard.

In most cases, recovery agents are contracted by a bail bonds company. Howard says he checks into the history of his contracted workers himself and trains them how to operate.

However, many bail bond companies do not. In Alabama, they're not required to.

"We are behind the curve," said Howard.

Howard said, surrounding states already have legislation on the books, requiring not only a license to be a recovery agent but continuing education and a background check. Senate Bill 384 would be very similar.

"This is something I feel like our business has needed for a very long time," said Howard.
Howard said the recent arrest of three men in Madison who allegedly impersonated U.S Marshals while looking for a "fugitive," highlights the need for legislation.

The men stopped an innocent person on Highway 72 at Wall Triana Highway and pointed guns inside the vehicle.

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