Misspelling Turns Job Hunter Into a Convicted Felon

A spelling error gave a job hunter a convicted felon's criminal record

As if it wasn't hard enough to find a job in this economy, one Broward man was saddled with a criminal record he didn't earn.

Thomas Coccia was mistakenly given the dubious credit of selling cocaine and resisting arrest despite never being in trouble a day in his life.

The clerical error happened in the Broward courthouse, where the real culprit, a man named Thomas Cuccia, was being punished for the crimes, reports the Sun-Sentinel.

But the mistake allegedly cost Coccia his a shot at numerous jobs because his criminal background checks turned up very dirty and turned prospective employers off.

"It was extremely frustrating because I had no idea what the problem was or where to go to fix it. Nobody in my profession would hire me because of this mark on my record," said Coccia, who is still out of work.

Coccia eventually had to take the fight to expunge his record to the County Commission, who finally ordered the Clerk of Courts to clean the Margate man's record. Coccia is a bank officer by trade and any criminal record would eliminate him from consideration in this competitive job market, he said.

A convicted felon who sells crack also isn't the most desirable candidate.

Here's an idea. Maybe someone in the county should offer Coccia a job as a spell checker or keeping court records straight so this doesn't happen to anyone again.

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