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Expungement – Sealing DUI Charges In Colorado

….Traffic Charges Such As DUI – DWAI’s Can Never Be Sealed or Expunged

By Colorado DUI – DWAI Criminal Defense Lawyer – Attorney – H. Michael Steinberg

In Colorado – the Expungement – Sealing of DUI Charges and other criminal records is controlled by statute. With the exception of certain drug offenses for an individual to be eligible to seal their records- the case must be completely dismissed. For certain kinds of offenses such as sexual offenses and traffic offenses – even a complete dismissal of the case will not make the case eligible to be sealed – expunged.

To repeat – while tough to understand – certain groups of charges – even cases that are completely dismissed are NOT eligible to be sealed and can NEVER be expunged.

Expungement - Sealing DUI Charges

Expungement – Sealing DUI Charges

In this group are two very clear categories:

(1) All Sex Offenses or offenses ( the factual basis involved unlawful sexual behavior).

and

(2) All Traffic Offenses

The Requirements For Sealing A Criminal Arrest or Criminal Record in COMPLETELY DISMISSED cases are:

You may only petition the Court to seal arrest or criminal records if the Defendant meets one of the following requirements:

All charges were dismissed or the Defendant was acquitted of all charges.

There is only an arrest record and no charges were filed in a Court.

The Defendant had a case that was dismissed due to a plea agreement in another case and 10 or more years have passed from the final disposition of all criminal proceedings and no additional criminal charges since the date of the final disposition of all criminal proceedings have been filed against the Defendant.

Limitations on charges and cases that have been completely dismissed are:

You may not petition the Court to seal arrest or criminal records if:

You have been convicted of an offense for which the factual basis involved unlawful sexual behavior pursuant to16-22-102(9), C.R.S.; (The Colorado courts have held that, as used in the sexual offenses exception, the term “conviction” includes a successfully completed and dismissed deferred judgment – which has led to a dismissal)

or

An offense was not charged due to a plea agreement in a separate case, and 10 years have not passed since the final disposition of all criminal proceedings against the Defendant;

or

A dismissal occurred as part of a plea agreement in a separate case, and 10 years have not passed since the final disposition of all criminal proceedings against the Defendant;

or

You still owe restitution, fines, court costs, late fees, or other fees ordered by the Court in the case being requested to seal, unless the court has vacated such order.

or

The offense or case dismissed pertained to a class 1 or class 2 misdemeanor traffic offense, or to a class A or class B traffic infraction, or a conviction for a violation of Driving Under the Influence Section 42-4-1301(1) or (2), C.R.S.

Colorado Court Appeals Makes Clear – NO Expungement for DUI – Deferred Judgement Dismissals

In the recent 2011 Colorado Court of Appeals decision of In Re: Harte – the Court held that even traffic offenses such as DUI that have been dismissed as a result of a successfully completed Deferred Judgement and Sentence – (DJ and S) agreement) – CANNOT BE SEALED.. As in the situation of charges that have a sex offense factual basis.

The Court concluded that the Colorado State legislature intended the term “conviction” to include Harte’s successfully completed deferred judgment

The Court said – with reference to public safety…

“The legislature has separately determined in the sealing statute that, as a matter of law, the public’s safety interest in having available an offender’s alcohol-related driving record outweighs any privacy interest of that offender.

..we conclude that the legislature intended the definition of “conviction” in the alcohol-related driving offenses exception to the sealing statute to include a successfully completed deferred judgment

“because “convictions” generally are never subject to sealing, the meaning of “conviction” in the context of sexual offenses would be superfluous if it did not include successfully completed deferred judgments, the same logic applies here

Expungement – Sealing DUI Charges – Summary of Colorado Law

Under the sealing statute, an interested person generally is eligible to seek the sealing of arrest and criminal records, other than those relating to “convictions,” in three situations:

(1) when the person was not charged,

(2) when the person was acquitted,

or

(3) when the case was completely dismissed. 24-72- 308(1)(a)(I), C.R.S. 2012.  

For additional information, see Colorado Revised Statute Section 24-72-308.

Please call our law firm if you have questions about ..

Expungement – Sealing DUI Charges

H. Michael Steinberg has been a Colorado criminal law specialist attorney for 30 years (as of 2012). For the First 13 years of his career, he was an Arapahoe – Douglas County District Attorney Senior prosecutor. In 1999 he formed his own law firm for the defense of Colorado criminal cases.

In addition to handling tens of thousands of cases in the trial courts of Colorado, he has written hundreds of articles regarding the practice of Colorado criminal law and frequently provides legal analysis on radio and television, appearing on the Fox News Channel, CNN and Various National and Local Newspapers and Radio Stations. Please call him at your convenience at 720-220-2277

If you have questions about Colorado Expungement – Sealing DUI Charges in the Denver metropolitan area and throughout Colorado, attorney H. Michael Steinberg will be pleased to answer those questions and to provides quality legal representation to those charged in Colorado adult and juvenile criminal matters.

In the Denver metropolitan area and throughout Colorado, attorney H. Michael Steinberg provides quality legal representation to those charged in Colorado adult and juvenile criminal matters…as regards Expungement – Sealing DUI Charges.

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___________________________
H. Michael Steinberg Esq.
Attorney and Counselor at Law
The Colorado Criminal Defense Law Firm of H. Michael Steinberg
A Denver, Colorado Lawyer Focused Exclusively On
Colorado Criminal Law For Over 30 Years.
DTC Quadrant Building
5445 DTC Parkway, Penthouse 4
Greenwood Village, Colorado, 80111
Primary Web Site:  http://www.HMichaelSteinberg.com
Colorado Criminal Law Blog:  www.Colorado-Criminal-Lawyer-Online.com
Main:  303.627.7777
Cell:  720.220.2277
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