Most states allow you to expunge your criminal record for certain crimes or after a certain amount of time has passed. Arizona is a little different. No matter what you do, you can never erase or expunge your criminal record in Arizona. You can request that a criminal conviction be set aside, but your record will always show that you were arrested and convicted of a crime.
At some point in your life, you may find yourself on the other end of the law, or you may meet someone that makes you feel like there’s something a bit off about them. This kind of situation could require you to sit down and start looking up criminal records so that you can have peace of mind after finding out whether someone is dangerous to be around. It’s good to always have a reliable website to check these things so you know who you can trust in the long run.
You may wonder why you should bother to get a criminal conviction set aside if it’s still going to appear on your background check. Well, one benefit of having it set aside is that whoever looks at it will know that you completed the terms of your probation. They will also see that the court has agreed to dismiss the charges and vacate the conviction.
Certain Crimes Can Never be Set Aside:
Although many felonies and misdemeanors can be set aside, there are some crimes that the State of Arizona refuses to set aside. These tend to be crimes that are dangerous or very serious. Some of the crimes that cannot be set aside in Arizona include:
- Crimes of a very dangerous nature such as murder, armed robbery, and assault with a deadly weapon.
- Crimes that require you to register as a sex offender. These crimes include child molestation, sexual assault, and rape. Certain domestic violence crimes fall into this category as well, depending on the nature of your case.
- Any offense that requires a finding of sexual motivation. This could be sexual exploitation, sex with a minor or child pornography.
- Any crime where the victim is less than 15 years old. This includes more than just child molestation. It includes crimes that involve the battery or abuse of a child, neglect or kidnapping.
- Certain driving offenses. The driving offense has to very egregious for the court to determine that it cannot be set aside. This may include third-offense DUI or reckless driving in the commission of a felony.
If you have been convicted of any of these offenses, you will need to consult an attorney to see if your record can be amended.
Correcting Mistakes on Your Criminal Record:
There are times when you learn that your criminal record is incorrect. If you have a common name or share the same name as your father or child, you may find that their criminal history gets confused with yours. The problem is you only learn of these mistakes when someone alerts you to the fact. You may apply for a job or a certain license and find out that you have a conviction on your record. You will need to either contact the court yourself or hire a lawyer to get the problem corrected.
Other instances of when your criminal record is incorrect are when the wrong crime or outcome is posted on your record. Let’s say, for example, that you are charged with a misdemeanor such a petit theft. You go to court, are convicted, and pay your fines or complete your probation. If your criminal record has it listed as a felony or some other crime, you will need to get it corrected.
The procedure for getting your criminal record corrected can be confusing. So can the process for getting a conviction set aside. It is in your best interest to hire an experienced attorney to handle this for you. If you don’t do it right the first time, you may lose the opportunity to do so. It can also get expensive if you fail to meet all of the legal requirements on your first attempt.