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New law allows for restricted record access for certain crimes

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A change in state law that starts Friday allows non-violent offenders to have their criminal records sealed for misdemeanor and Class D felonies. An Indianapolis man is already filing a petition asking the Marion Superior Court to limit access to records involving two money conversion convictions.

This past session, the General Assembly passed House Enrolled Act 121, referred to as the new “second-chance” law. This allows individuals convicted of certain offenses that weren’t violent or sex crimes to request restricted access to arrest and criminal records after eight years since they completed a sentence. The new law’s limited to misdemeanors and Class D felonies, and it only limits access rather than expunging a person’s record completely.

HEA 1211 also allows people to request that limited record access if he or she was not prosecuted, if the charges were dismissed, if acquitted, or if the conviction was later vacated.

If a court grants the request, an individual would not be required to disclose the conviction on employment applications or any other documents outside of the criminal justice system.

The legislation’s co-sponsor, Sen. Greg Taylor, D-Indianapolis, a civil attorney with Gonzalez Saggio & Harlan, held a press conference about the new statute outside the City-County Building in Indianapolis where resident Quinn Minor joined him before filing his petition. Minor received two "low-value" convictions in 1997 and 1999, and since completing his home detention and probation sentences, he has had trouble trying to find employment as a result of those being listed on his record.

“I’ve owned my own business, gone back to school, and raised a family with my wife of 13 years,” Minor said. “I paid my dues for these crimes, and I think my family deserves the opportunity to move forward without my old mistakes limiting our future.”

The Indiana State Police is responsible for the general aspect of limiting access to criminal histories, and about two dozen requests had been filed during the past three years through November 2010. A legislative fiscal analysis earlier this year said it wasn’t clear how many people this new law could effect.

A spokeswoman for the Indiana Senate Democrats said they have contaced the Indiana Supreme Court in hopes of having a form created for pro se petitioners.

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  • Dupree file
    I have a class D felony on my record. I was not convicted,but because it shows on my record I can't find a job or enroll in school.

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  1. Indiana's seatbelt law is not punishable as a crime. It is an infraction. Apparently some of our Circuit judges have deemed settled law inapplicable if it fails to fit their litmus test of political correctness. Extrapolating to redefine terms of behavior in a violation of immigration law to the entire body of criminal law leaves a smorgasbord of opportunity for judicial mischief.

  2. I wonder if $10 diversions for failure to wear seat belts are considered moral turpitude in federal immigration law like they are under Indiana law? Anyone know?

  3. What a fine article, thank you! I can testify firsthand and by detailed legal reports (at end of this note) as to the dire consequences of rejecting this truth from the fine article above: "The inclusion and expansion of this right [to jury] in Indiana’s Constitution is a clear reflection of our state’s intention to emphasize the importance of every Hoosier’s right to make their case in front of a jury of their peers." Over $20? Every Hoosier? Well then how about when your very vocation is on the line? How about instead of a jury of peers, one faces a bevy of political appointees, mini-czars, who care less about due process of the law than the real czars did? Instead of trial by jury, trial by ideological ordeal run by Orwellian agents? Well that is built into more than a few administrative law committees of the Ind S.Ct., and it is now being weaponized, as is revealed in articles posted at this ezine, to root out post moderns heresies like refusal to stand and pledge allegiance to all things politically correct. My career was burned at the stake for not so saluting, but I think I was just one of the early logs. Due, at least in part, to the removal of the jury from bar admission and bar discipline cases, many more fires will soon be lit. Perhaps one awaits you, dear heretic? Oh, at that Ind. article 12 plank about a remedy at law for every damage done ... ah, well, the founders evidently meant only for those damages done not by the government itself, rabid statists that they were. (Yes, that was sarcasm.) My written reports available here: Denied petition for cert (this time around): http://tinyurl.com/zdmawmw Denied petition for cert (from the 2009 denial and five year banishment): http://tinyurl.com/zcypybh Related, not written by me: Amicus brief: http://tinyurl.com/hvh7qgp

  4. Justice has finally been served. So glad that Dr. Ley can finally sleep peacefully at night knowing the truth has finally come to the surface.

  5. While this right is guaranteed by our Constitution, it has in recent years been hampered by insurance companies, i.e.; the practice of the plaintiff's own insurance company intervening in an action and filing a lien against any proceeds paid to their insured. In essence, causing an additional financial hurdle for a plaintiff to overcome at trial in terms of overall award. In a very real sense an injured party in exercise of their right to trial by jury may be the only party in a cause that would end up with zero compensation.

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