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Secrets of the Texas Criminal Justice System and Your Rights
Sometimes people are arrested and convicted of crimes that they may not have committed. Eventually, they might be acquitted, but the crime will follow them and stay on their record. If you have been convicted and later acquitted of a trial, you have options. A lawyer can try to help you apply for a discretionary expunction. Which can give you a second chance at life. Discretionary expunction in Texas can seem confusing but an experienced expunction attorney can help you make sense of it all. Contact a skilled expunction lawyer and know that you are in good hands.
What is Discretionary Expunction?
There is always a discretionary loophole. Say a person is charged, convicted, and then later acquitted by a court of appeals, which overturns their conviction. They were convicted, but then subsequently acquitted, so their conviction is set aside. The person qualifies for discretionary expunction. This is also true if the period in which review of their case is granted expires.
To be eligible for discretionary expunction in Texas, the office of the attorney representing the state of Texas must recommend expunction. Now, no prosecuting attorney is just going to volunteer to do this to help someone out. It is up to an attorney to be proactive in presenting a request.
Process of Applying for Discretionary Expunction
When an attorney works with individuals who might be eligible for expunction, they present documentation to the prosecuting attorney outlining the reasons that they feel the accused merits expunction, accompanied by any mitigating factors they can come up with, and negotiate with the district attorney to agree to recommend it.
If the attorney can convince them to recommend it, subsequently, expunction is either approved or rejected at the discretion of the judge. If the judge feels that granting expunction does not serve the best interest of justice, they can block the expunction.
Common causes for discretionary expunction in Texas arise when false information or identity theft led to the initial conviction. A person can also seek discretionary expunction on behalf of a deceased relative to clear the family name and bring about justice and closure.
Expunction of Arrest Records that are No Longer Necessary
People are still in the criminal justice system here and that means if the police can use a person to score a conviction, they will. If they cannot use someone, they are viewed as expendable.
In the context of expunction, this is actually good news for people because this is also true for their records. If someone’s arrest records will not help the police put someone else behind bars, there is no reason for them to remain on record.
The attorney representing the state of Texas must certify that an individual’s records are not needed for any criminal investigation or criminal prosecution in order for the records to be expunged.
Value of an Attorney
If you want to know more about discretionary expunction in Texas, consult a skilled expunction lawyer. Your attorney can help you collect and present the proper documentation to the judge and courts. Work with a qualified lawyer that can work tirelessly to build your case.