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What exactly does it mean to have a conviction expunged?

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  • What exactly does it mean to have a conviction expunged?

    According to this KTLA news report, Mel Gibson had his 2006 DUI expunged:

    ktla.com /news/landing/ktla-mel-gibson-dui,0,4945215.story

    KTLA
    Mel Gibson's 2006 DUI Expunged
    KTLA News

    1:46 PM PDT, October 6, 2009


    LOS ANGELES -- Mel Gibson's infamous drunk driving arrest three years ago is no longer on his criminal record.

    A judge on Tuesday agreed to expunge the misdemeanor DUI from the actor's record, according to Sandi Gibbons of the Los Angeles County district attorney's office.

    Gibson's lawyer requested the motion to dismiss the offense, saying the actor successfully completed the terms of his three-year probation.

    As part of the 2006 conviction, Gibson agreed to attend Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, appear in public service announcements and pay $1,300 in fines.

    Gibson was pulled over July 2006 for speeding on Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu.

    A breathalyzer test showed his blood-alcohol level was .12% -- above the legal limit of .08%.

    A report of the arrest later surfaced, detailing Gibson's erratic behavior during the arrest.

    According to the report, Gibson threatened Sheriff's Deputy James Mee, saying he "owned Malibu" and would "get even" with the deputy.

    The report also said Gibson stated, "The Jews are responsible for all the wars in the world," before asking the deputy, who is Jewish: "Are you a Jew?"

    He also allegedly insulted a female sergeant by asking, "What are you looking at, sugar tits?"

    Gibson later apologized for his behavior.

    Some said he received special treatment since his arrest was initially said to be without incident.

    Copyright © 2009, KTLA-TV, Los Angeles
    If expunged really means that the conviction is not on his record, then he could be convicted of DUI tommorrow and it would not be a repeat offense, correct?

    Perhaps I misunderstand the article, but it seems as though the reason the judge expunged it is because Mel Gibson successfully completed his sentence. Is that really all there is to getting an expungement, completing your sentence and filing a motion? It also appears as though the fact that it was a misdemeanor was a factor in granting the motion.

    I have a reckless driving conviction from 2007 and my probation ends in January of 2010, it was a misdemeamor as well. Am I eligible to apply for an expungement?

  • #2
    Sounds like a deferred adjudication to me.

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    • #3
      http://lmgtfy.com/?q=What+does+it+me...rd+expunged%3F

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      • #4
        ex·punge (k-spnj)
        tr.v. ex·punged, ex·pung·ing, ex·pung·es
        1. To erase or strike out: "I have corrected some factual slips, expunged some repetitions" (Kenneth Tynan).
        2. To eliminate completely; annihilate. See Synonyms at erase.


        It means that, according to law, it never happened. The case is no longer a matter of record.
        Be courteous to all, but intimate with few, and let those few be well tried before you give them your confidence!

        [George Washington (1732 - 1799)]

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        • #5
          And if it is truly expunged, then he continues to recieve special treatment, he is thus, one of "the elite".
          "That's right man, we've got mills here that'll blow that heap of your's right off the road."

          "Beautiful Daughter of the Stars."(it's my home now)

          >>>>> A Time for Choosing <<<<<

          Retired @ 31yr 2mo as of 0000 hrs. 01-01-10. Yeah, all in all, it was good.

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          • #6
            Not that it will happen, but where Mel to apply for a Reserve Deputy or Reserve Officer slot, as some celebs are wont to do, his "Expungement" would be non-existant. The arrest and subsequent disposition would be accessed.

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            • #7
              I would think that almost anyone could have an attorney file a motion to expunge their record after all the post conviction terms were met. How many "regular" people actually pay an attorney to do so? That may contribute to why it seems that Gibson and other public figures are receiving special treatment.
              There is no safety for honest men except by believing all possible evil of evil men. - Edmund Burke

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              • #8
                Originally posted by kknudsen View Post
                I would think that almost anyone could have an attorney file a motion to expunge their record after all the post conviction terms were met. How many "regular" people actually pay an attorney to do so? That may contribute to why it seems that Gibson and other public figures are receiving special treatment.
                In most cases, the procedure for an Expungement isn't quite as easy as your post suggests. Usually, an expungement is granted only after certain conditions, imposed by the court have been met. Those could range from community service, actual time in custody, a monetary fine, or probation, or some other condition authorized by law. In theory, any citizen, in a situation similar to Mel Gibson's could have a conviction "Expunged". Not to belittle your post. You make an excellent point. Just wanted to amplify it a little.

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                • #9
                  It means if a civilian wants info on your criminal record it won't show. However there is still a record for the courts and law enforcement.

                  Lots of normal people get expungements, it's just that the news doesn't cover that.
                  Last edited by wirefire2; 10-09-2009, 07:34 PM.

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