San Antonio Criminal Defense Attorney
Expungement: Let Us Help You Get a New Start
Having a criminal record can be damage your reputation and hinder your
ability to find a job and maintain professional relationships. Many people
arrested and charged with a crime believe that if they are found "not
guilty" after a trial or their case is dismissed before trial, the
record of the incident no longer exists and cannot affect them. Unfortunately,
that is not true.
If you think your criminal history contains past allegations that are suitable
for expunction, call a San Antonio
criminal defense attorney for a
Criminal Records in Texas
Records relating to an arrest and criminal charges are created at the time
of arrest and forwarded to the Texas Department of Public Safety by the
arresting agency, such as the Bexar County Sheriff's Office. DPS,
in turn, enters this information into a database called "TCIC,"
which tracks arrests and dispositions of cases in Texas and then sends
the data to a national criminal information system called "NCIC."
Additionally, more and more county and district clerks' offices are
beginning to maintain computer databases of arrest records and case dispositions.
Under the Texas Open Records Act, the public can access arrest records
for things like apartment leasing checks, background investigations for
employment, adoption background checks, and other related matters. Unfortunately,
even if your prior criminal offenses were a long time ago, potential employers,
landlords, and others can still discover your criminal record by searching
your name online or in a courthouse.
Having your criminal record expunged can be entirely beneficial, if you
are eligible. If you are able to have your record expunged, not only will
the offense be taken off of your record, but your booking photo, fingerprints,
arrest report, and DPS records will all be erased as if it never happened.
Find more information about expungements in our
Answers to Common Questions
What types of cases are eligible for expunction?
With a few exceptions, the majority of criminal cases that have been dismissed,
rejected or declined for prosecution are eligible for expunction. Additionally,
completed pre-trial diversions, "not guilty" verdicts and Class
"C" misdemeanor deferred dispositions are also eligible.
How long does the expunction process take?
The entire interview and legal paperwork process usually takes a few months
from start to finish in order to make sure the expunction is complete
What is the end result?
Once your record is expunged, DPS and other federal, state and local law
enforcement agencies will be ordered by a Texas District Court to destroy
your criminal record in its entirety. This will leave no evidence of your
prior arrest available for use by anyone, including the FBI and all other
law enforcement officials. Once your record is expunged you may legally
deny the occurrence of the arrest and/or prosecution that has been expunged.
Note: When questioned under oath in a criminal proceeding about an arrest
for which the records have been expunged, you are permitted to say only
that the "matter in question has been expunged.
What if someone refuses to expunge my record?
Any officer who learns of your expunction and uses or releases the information
in some way is guilty of a criminal offense. Similarly, those officers
who do not follow through with destroying certain parts of an expunged
record can be charged with a crime.
Ready for a fresh start?
Our team at The Law Office of John J. Fox is ready begin the process of
determining if your records can be expunged. In this day and age of background
checks and pre-employment screening, the benefit t to you could be enormous.
Don't let your past mistakes or a wrongful arrest/prosecution continue
to do damage to you and your family's future!
Contact a San Antonio criminal lawyer to discover how we can help you.