Indiana expungement law offers people second chance

| November 7, 2012

EDITOR’S NOTE: Allen County Superior Court Judge Fran Gull advises everyone who wants to see their convictions disappear to consult a lawyer before they try to engage in the expungement process. “Those who want to use it have only one chance in their lifetimes, so if a petition goes nowhere or is done improperly, that’s it, she said.” (See article here)


Click here to read “Expunging
or Restricting Access to Adult
Criminal Records in Indiana”

Click here to read LaLeta’s
follow-up article

Did you know that there is a new Indiana expungement law that gives the convicted a “second chance” and it is FREE, you can do this yourself?  A new version of the past statue took effect on July 1, 2011. The statute was signed into law by Governor Mitch Daniels and the law allows individuals who have committed non-violent offenses to request their criminal records be sealed. The new law is to help people with minor criminal records receive less scrutiny when finding employment as well as to help those pursuing educational goals. The statute is known around Indiana as the “Second Chance Act.”

State Senator Greg Taylor (D-Indianapolis), who co-sponsored the Act, stated “We need to give those who have made a mistake and paid their debt to society a Second Chance to elevate their lives and provide for their families.”

The new Indiana expungement law applies to the following persons:

1. Persons who were arrested for a criminal act, but

• Were not prosecuted on the criminal charge;

• All charges were dismissed;

• Were acquitted of all criminal charges; or

• Were convicted of the crime and the conviction was subsequently vacated

2. Persons who were convicted of a criminal act and

• The person is NOT a sex or violent offender

• The person was convicted of a MISDEMEANOR or a CLASS D FELONY that DID NOT RESULT IN INJURY to a person; or

• Eight years have passed

• The person has not been convicted of a felony since completed the sentence/additionally, if more that 15 years have elapsed.

Communities, please take advantage of this new law. If this is not for you, then maybe you know a neighbor, friend or family member who can use this important information. This process takes about two to three weeks to complete. You will need to give copy of the “Petition To Restrict Access To Criminal History Records” to the local prosecuting office and a copy to the courts (felony or misdemeanor).

Did you know that you can access criminal public records thru Click on “Defendant” and enter the name. You don’t even need a person’s birth date or Social Security number. I see this as a problem because there can be many Joe Dows, and what employer is going to give you the opportunity to explain? For example, Joe Dow could have performed a robbery in Chicago and you never lived in Chicago. Will the person looking at that information give you the opportunity to say, “That wasn’t me?” No, I don’t think so. In a perfect world, maybe, but sometimes that is not the America that I live in! Employers and rental facilities are using this site when we seek employment and homes and you—we—are PAYING THE DEBT all over again. If you need to seek assistance with this paperwork, please e-mail me at Take your life back!

Remember GOD is good all the time and all the time GOD is good, Keep your head-up and GOD BLESS you…

SOURCE: 1-31-2012


This article originally appeared in the November 7 print edition.

Category: Local, Opinion

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Frost Illustrated is Fort Wayne's oldest weekly newspaper. Your Independent Voice in the Community, featuring news & views of African Americans since 1968.

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