Expunging a criminal record causes it to be completely destroyed, as if the criminal charges or arrest never occurred. In the state of Arizona expungement is generally not available except under limited circumstances: (1) juvenile defendants (whether charged as juveniles or adults with some limitations) and (2) adult defendants who are prosecuted for crimes which occurred before their 18th birthday. In most cases, however, there are processes by which a convicted person may ask the convicting agency or magistrate to modify or set aside convictions once the sentence has been completed. This has the legal effect of removing the conviction from the person’s record.
Special circumstances for Juveniles charged as Adults: ARS 13-921 (or adults charged for offenses that occurred as a juvenile).
Under ARS 13-921, a person who is under 18 years of age but has been tried as an adult, or a person who is over 18 years of age and is tried for an offense that occurred when the person was under 18 years of age, may apply to have their record entirely expunged if the person meets the following criteria:
- The defendant is under eighteen years of age at the time the offense is committed;
- The defendant is convicted of a felony offense
- The defendant is not sentenced to a term of imprisonment;
- The defendant does not have a historical prior felony conviction;
- The defendant successfully completes the terms and conditions of probation;
then the court may set aside the judgment of guilt, dismiss the information or indictment, expunge the defendant’s record, and order him or her released from all penalties and disabilities resulting from the convictions.
Special circumstances for Sexual Crimes: ARS 13-923
Under ARS 13-923, if a person who is under 22 years of age has been convicted of an offense that occurred when the person was under 18 years of age, and is required to register pursuant to the offense, then that person has the right to request a probation hearing at least once a year. (The court in its power and discretion over all probationers has accepted petitions from persons over the age of 22 even though ARS 13-923 places an age limitation on the petition).
At the probation hearing, the prosecutor, probationer attorney, probation officer, and victim or victim’s attorney may be in attendance. At the hearing, after hearing from those present, the court shall consider:
- Whether to continue, modify or terminate the probation and
Whether to continue to require, to suspend or to terminate the probationer’s registration pursuant to the offense.To have your lifetime probation reviewed in order to have your probation terminated, sex-offender registration terminated, community notification terminated, and/or to work towards expungement contact Arizona Expungement Attorney Jeremy Geigle today.
Adult motion to set aside
In Arizona, a person convicted of a misdemeanor may ask the convicting agency or magistrate to “set aside” the conviction upon sentence completion. In other words, a misdemeanant may request to have his/her record set aside. This process allows the conviction to be removed from the record; however, the procedural history still remains part of the record. In other words, the record will show the charge and guilty status dismissed or set aside.
In order to be eligible to set aside convictions, the sentence must first be successfully completed. In addition, set asides are limited to crimes that did NOT involve:
- Use of a deadly weapon
- Sex crimes
- Crimes against children
- Sever injury or death
To set aside your criminal record, contact Jeremy Geigle today to file a Motion to Set Aside your conviction.
Juveniles charged as adults
To ensure fairness and accountability juveniles may be charged as adults in certain situations. Juveniles 15 years of age or older accused of murder, forcible sexual assault, armed robbery or other violent felony offenses as defined by statute shall be prosecuted as adults in Arizona.
In Arizona, sex crime convictions of adults cannot be set aside or expunged. In addition, a person who has been convicted of a sex crime must register with the county sheriff within ten days of conviction, or within ten days after entering and remaining in any county within the state of Arizona.
2023 Update: Get Your Record Sealed
As of January 1, 2023, individuals that have been arrested, convicted or sentenced in the State of Arizona may petition the courts to seal their records.
Following the enactment of A.R.S § 13.911, you may be eligible to seal your arrest record. Due to this groundbreaking new law, when an individual has their criminal record sealed, the records relating to the crime are hidden from public records, and no one may view the contents without a court order.
When a record is sealed, employers, landlords, and schools that run a background check will not come up with any record of your criminal conduct.
We may be able to help you if you were:
- Convicted of a criminal offense and has completed all of the terms and conditions of the sentence imposed by the court, including the payment of all monetary obligations and restitution to all victims.
- Charged with a criminal offense and the charge was subsequently dismissed or resulted in a not guilty verdict at a trial.
- Arrested for a criminal offense and no charges were filed.
All case records that are sealed pursuant to this section may be:
- Alleged as an element of an offense.
- Used as a historical prior felony conviction.
- Admissible for impeaching any party or witness in a subsequent trial.
- Used to enhance the sentence for a subsequent felony.
- Used to enhance the sentence pursuant to sections 28-1381 and 28-1382.
- Pleaded and proved in any subsequent prosecution of the person by this state or a political subdivision of this state.
- Used as a conviction if the conviction would be admissible if the conviction was not sealed.
If you are unsure whether or not you meet the criteria to have your record sealed, contact the criminal defense team at JacksonWhite. Our criminal defense team has years of experience defending their clients’ rights, and they offer free case reviews to answer any questions you may have.
Why Hire a Lawyer Now?
If you have committed a crime in the greater Phoenix area, it’s vital to contact an attorney immediately, preferably before you are questioned by the police. Seeking the counsel of an experienced Phoenix juvenile criminal defense attorney is your best chance at effectively defending your case and obtaining the result you want for your case.
Call the JacksonWhite Criminal Law team at (480) 467-4370 to discuss your case today.