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Secrets of the Texas Criminal Justice System and Your Rights
If you or anyone you know has ever been arrested—for anything—you know how damaging it can be, whether or not you even actually committed a crime.
Even if charges are dropped and you walk away from the whole experience unscathed, your name is still in the police report, still on file as having been arrested, and sometimes even still on file right next to the crime you were charged with.
If you have been wrongfully arrested or charged and you are eligible for sealing your record, you should begin considering Texas expunction. A skilled expunction attorney can help you get a second chance at life.
What Happens After an Arrest
Following an arrest, a person’s name appears on the police report, their name appears on the arrest record, and they are on record as having been investigated for a crime. The individual might have been arrested and released 72 hours later, without being charged, because the police were unable to show sufficient probable cause to justify the person’s arrest.
Typically, that would be the end of it, but the fact of the matter is that the individual’s name is still on record. Despite the police not establishing enough evidence to justify a person’s arrest, they will continue to view the person as someone with an arrest history and treat them accordingly. Unfortunately, the consequences do not stop there.
Regardless of whether someone was convicted of—or even committed—a crime, people will treat them differently when they find out that they have been arrested. Even if a person has been wrongly charged with a crime, or another person gave the arrested individual’s name instead of their own at the time of their arrest, that incident is tied to that individual’s name—until they do something about it. That is when it would be advisable for someone to begin considering Texas expunction.
Long-Term Consequences of a Criminal Record
Practically everyone runs background checks. Everyone, from employers to landlords to banks to government and non-government agencies and in between, can discover a person’s arrest record in their background check. Their date might even run a background check on them before agreeing to meet them for coffee.
Anyone who looks can—and will—find a record of their arrest in the background check. In this age of information, an arrest or charge does not just vanish because law enforcement failed to convict the individual. It is easy to dig up dirt on anyone with just the click of a mouse, which is why considering Texas expunction is a valid and necessary option for those who want to move forward. Without an expunction, many are left repeatedly having to explain and atone for past mistakes.
Importance of Contacting an Attorney
If you have been wrongfully arrested or, if you are eligible and considering Texas expunction, you should consult an experienced lawyer as soon as possible. An attorney’s primary job is to protect your rights and ensure that you are being treated fairly. Do not let your past prevent you from moving forward. Consult a determined attorney that can advocate for you.