Lots of Chicago leasing agents are unsavory characters, but only a small minority of them are convicted criminals. If you want to be certain that your leasing agent has a record of criminal convictions, you can call Chicago Apartment Finders and ask for Bryan Duffy, or call Kale Realty and ask for Bruce Stafford.
A hat tip to the January 2013 Discipline Report (PDF) from IDFPR for the leads. Per IDFPR:
Bryan Duffy, Chicago – real estate leasing agent license (473app3253691) to be issued and placed on indefinite probation for a minimum of three years based on criminal convictions in 2005 and 2009.
According to Duffy’s LinkedIn profile, he’s affiliated with Chicago Apartment Finders and attended Purdue North Central in Westville, IN. Westville is in LaPorte County, IN.
A news release from the US Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Indiana contains the following entry:
Bryan Duffy, 24, of LaPorte, Indiana, plead guilty on 5/6/10 before Judge Robert Miller, Jr. to count 1 of an indictment charging him with possession with the intent to distribute psylocybin (mushroom). Sentencing has been set for July 22, 2010. This case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Frank Schaffer.
Would that be in addition to the 2005 and 2009 convictions? I placed a call to Duffy, who refused to discuss the subject with me. Here’s a review of Duffy at Yelp.
I also contacted the Edgewater office of Chicago Apartment Finders to inquire about Duffy. I was referred to an HR person, and have left a message requesting information.
Bruce Stafford, Chicago – real estate leasing agent license (473app3216816) to be issued and placed on probation for 24 months due to past criminal convictions.
I put in a call to Bruce and asked him to share with me the nature of those convictions. He was unwilling to do that. I’ve also placed a call to the managing broker at Kale Realty, but haven’t yet received a response.
Chicago’s rental services, many of which can be found on our do-not-call list, are typically not very demanding in their hiring standards. Before agreeing to work with any leasing agent at a rental service a/k/a apartment locator a/k/a apartment finder, insist on seeing a state-issued license and photo ID that matches the name on that license. Then do a thorough online search for information about that person. Or, you can just take potluck and get in the car with someone who may have a criminal record. When you enter your Driver’s License and Social Security numbers on the application for an apartment, ask yourself whether you’re handing that info to someone with a history of identity theft.