Is it possible to hire a lawyer to get “open container in public” and “threats misdemeanor” violations off my personal record?

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Is it possible to hire a lawyer to get “open container in public” and “threats misdemeanor” violations off my personal record?

Asked on June 18, 2012 under Criminal Law, District of Columbia

Answers:

B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Expunction laws are somewhat tougher in D.C. than in other states, but it is still possible to get a record sealed.  Expunctions are allowed only under limited circumstances, but the nature of the offenses you list in your question seem to fit better with a request to "seal."  Even though they are often used interchangeably, they are actually two different terms with different results.  Expungment means it's off your record and no one can use it later.  A sealed record means it's still on your records so law enforcement can still use it, but the general public will no longer have access to it.  Several factors can influence the court's ability or discretion to grant or deny your motion to seal, including other criminal history, the timing of these arrests, and how you pled to these allegations.  Your first step is really to get copies on your final judgments (if you pled) or a copy of your offense reports.  From there, take them to an attorney that handles motions to seal, and let them give you a consultation that is more specific to what happened in your case. 


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