Holcomb Dunbar - North Mississippi Attorneys

EXPUNGEMENT IN MISSISSIPPI

EXPUNGEMENT MISSISSIPPI

EXPUNGEMENT MISSISSIPPI

A criminal record can create many challenges when trying to move forward in your life.  When an arrest is made a record is also created that others may find – even if the charge is later dismissed.  This most frequently occurs when one applies for a job requiring a background check.  A criminal record or prior arrest can be a barrier to achieving one’s goals in many other instances, such as gaining acceptance to certain schools or universities and in obtaining loans to name a few.  In many instances, these prior arrests or convictions can be “erased” through the expungement process

If you have a prior arrest or conviction, please contact us at (662) 234-8775 to discuss the possibility of expungement with one of our attorneys.  Or you may also email Russ McNees (email).

WHAT IS AN EXPUNGEMENT?

Simply put, an expungement is a legal way to “clear your record.”  Only a nonpublic record of the offense or arrest is retained by the Mississippi Criminal Information Center, which is used solely for determining in subsequent proceedings if you are a first offender.   As a result, after expungement, employers should not be able to find your previous conviction when conducting a background check.

By statute, the expungement is designed to restore you to the same “status” as you had before the arrest and charge.  In addition, under Mississippi law, you may not be found guilty of perjury for failure to recite or acknowledge your arrest or conviction in almost all circumstances.

WHAT CAN BE EXPUNGED?

EXPUNGEMENT MISSISSIPPI

Russ McNees

MISDEMEANOR EXPUNGEMENT

If you have ever been arrested or charged with a misdemeanor offense in Mississippi, contact us at your convenience to discuss your options for expungement.  There are several methods to expunge a misdemeanor charge from your record in Mississippi, including the following, among others.

Expungement of First Offense

By statute in Mississippi, “Any person who is convicted of a misdemeanor, excluding a conviction for a traffic violation, and who is a first offender, may petition the justice, county, circuit or municipal court in which the conviction was had for an order to expunge any such conviction from all public records.”  Miss. Code Ann. § 99-19-71.

In some instances a person may seek the expungement of additional misdemeanor convictions obtained in municipal court.  Miss. Code Ann. § 21-23-7(6) provides that upon prior notice to the municipal prosecuting attorney and upon a showing in open court of (1) rehabilitation, (2) good conduct for a period of 2 years since the last conviction in any court and (3) that the best interest of society would be served, the court may, in its discretion, order the record of conviction of a person of any or all misdemeanors in that court expunged.

Expungement after Nonadjudication

When a misdemeanor charge has been nonadjudicated, Mississippi law provides that upon successful completion of court-imposed conditions, the charge is to be dismissed.  Upon dismissal, and in other circumstances, the law directs the Court to expunge the record upon petition to the Court.

Expungement after Dismissal or Case Retired to File

Upon petition to the Court, Mississippi law requires the Court to expunge the record of any case in which an arrest was made, the person arrested was released and the case was dismissed or the charges were dropped or there was no disposition of the case.

Expungement of Minor in Possession Charge

In addition to expungement under one of the methods discussed above, a minor in possession or “MIP” conviction can be expunged in certain circumstances by separate statute “not sooner than one (1) year after the dismissal of the charge or completion of any sentence and/or payment of any fine.”  Miss. Code Ann. § 67-3-70.

DUI Expungement

House Bill 412 was signed into law by Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant on April 16, 2014, making certain DUI convictions expungeable once the complete law goes into effect on October 1, 2014. This new law provides that any person who was convicted of a first offense DUI under Miss. Code Ann. § 63-11-30(2) or (3) may petition the circuit court of the county of conviction for an order to expunge the record of the conviction.  Expungement of your DUI conviction is only available at least 5 years after successful completion of all terms and conditions of the sentence imposed to a person:

1.       Who was not the holder of a commercial driver’s license or commercial learning permit;

2.       Who successfully complete all terms and conditions of the sentence imposed for the conviction;

3.       Who did not refuse to submit to a blood or breath test;

4.       Whose blood alcohol concentration (BAC) tested below .16% if test results are available;

5.       Who has not been convicted of or have pending any other offense of driving under the influence; and

6.       Who has provided the court with justification as to why the conviction should be expunged.

FELONY EXPUNGEMENT

Many felony charges can also be expunged – even after a guilty plea or conviction.  And like misdemeanors, any felony charge that was dismissed, not prosecuted or in which you were found not guilty can be expunged.

If you have been a previous felony arrest or conviction, please contact us at (662) 234-8775 to discuss the possibility of expungement with one of our attorneys.  Or you may also email Russ McNees at rmcnees@holcombdunbar.com.

Expungement of Certain Felonies

Mississippi law allows for the expungement of the following felony convictions:

  1. A bad check offense under Miss. Code Ann. § 97-19-55;
  2. Possession of a controlled substance or paraphernalia under Miss. Code Ann. § 41-29-139(c) or (d);
  3. False pretense under Miss. Code Ann. § 97-19-39;
  4. Larceny under Miss. Code Ann. § 97-14-41;
  5. Malicious mischief under Miss. Code Ann. § 97-17-67; or
  6. Shoplifting under Miss. Code Ann. § 97-23-93.

A person is only eligible to expunge one of the above felony convictions.  Further, any person convicted of one of the above felonies must wait 5 years from the successful completion of all terms and conditions of the sentence before expungement is available.  Miss. Code Ann. § 99-19-71.

Mississippi allows for the expungement of additional felony convictions if committed while the person was under the age of 18.  In those cases, any one felony conviction may be expunged except the following:

1.       Rape under Miss. Code Ann. § 97-3-65 and 97-3-71;

2.       Sexual Battery under Miss. Code Ann. § 97-3-95;

3.       Murder under Miss. Code Ann. § 97-3-21;

4.       Manslaughter under Miss. Code Ann. § 97-3-25;

5.       Carjacking under Miss. Code Ann. § 97-3-113 through 97-3-117;

6.       Burglary of a commercial establishment or occupied dwelling;

7.       Cyberstalking under Miss. Code Ann. § 97-45-15;

8.       Exploitation of children by the use of computer or other means under Miss. Code Ann. § 97-5-31 through 97-5-37;

9.       Armed robbery under Miss. Code Ann. § 97-3-79; and

10.   Any felony that, in the determination of the circuit court, is a violent crime or felony that is related to the distribution of a controlled substance and in the court’s discretion it should not be expunged.

A person is only eligible to expunge one felony conviction committed under the age of 18.  Further, any person convicted must wait 5 years from the successful completion of all terms and conditions of the sentence before expungement is available.  Miss. Code Ann. § 99-19-71.

Expungement after Nonadjudication or Pretrial Intervention

Like misdemeanors, when a felony charge has been nonadjudicated, Mississippi law provides that upon successful completion of court-imposed conditions, the charge is to be dismissed.  Upon dismissal, and in other circumstances, the law directs the Court to expunge the record upon petition to the Court.

Expungement after Dismissal or Case Retired to File

Upon petition to the Court, Mississippi law requires the Court to expunge the record of any case in which an arrest was made, the person arrested was released and the case was dismissed or the charges were dropped or there was no disposition of the case.


2017