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Administrative Law Judge Says Washington State Licensee Can Keep Ham License

03/10/2010

In January 2007, the FCC issued an Order to Show Cause to David L. Titus, KB7ILD, of Seattle, Washington, to justify why his General class Amateur Radio license should not be revoked and initiated a hearing process to determine whether Titus “is qualified to remain a Commission licensee” in light of a 1993 felony conviction at the age of 18 for “communicating with a minor for immoral purposes.” According to the FCC order, Titus received a 25-month prison sentence for this act, and the Seattle Police Department has identified him as a registered sex offender. On March 9, Administrative Law Judge Richard L. Sippel issued his Initial Decision -- saying that Titus “has been a law-abiding member of his community for many years” and ordered that Titus’ license should not be revoked based on the evidence presented by the defendant and witnesses on his behalf, as well as the FCC’s Enforcement Bureau failure to meet the burden of proof necessary for revocation. The FCC has said that The Communications Act of 1934, as amended provides that the Commission may revoke any license if conditions come to its attention that would warrant a denial of the licensee’s original application. In the past, the Commission has said that felony convictions, “especially those involving sexual offenses involving children,” raise questions regarding a licensee’s character qualifications. Sippel’s Initial Decision shall become effective and this proceeding shall be terminated 50 days after its release if exceptions are not filed within 30 days thereafter, unless the Commission elects to review the case on its own motion.



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