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Expunction & “Criminal Episodes”

Expunction & “Criminal Episodes”

Expunction

An expunction can be valuable in clearing your record

Expunctions

Expunctions are already extremely rare and difficult to obtain. They become much more complex if you face multiple charges. To obtain an expunction, there are certain requirements that you must meet. However, even if you are eligible on one charge, you may be ineligible on another depending on your arrest.

Texas Code of Criminal Procedure § 55.01 deals with expunctions. Specifically, subsection (c) states, in essence, that a court may not grant an expunction of one charge if the person is still subject to prosecution (or was convicted for) another offense from the same “criminal episode.” Section 3.01 of the Texas Penal Code defines a “criminal episode” as:

  • A commission of two or more offenses, regardless of whether the harm is directed toward or inflicted upon more than one person or item of property, under the following circumstances:
    • the offenses are committed pursuant to the same transaction or pursuant to two or more transactions that are connected or constitute a common scheme or plan; or
    • the offenses are the repeated commission of the same or similar offenses.

Here is where the law gets more ridiculous. Do you see the “same or similar offenses” language above? Courts have interpreted that language to mean that a second DWI can NOT be expunged. This is true even if you are acquitted because a DWI 2 is a “similar” offense to a first-time DWI.

In short:

  1. You cannot have the court expunge a dismissed charged if there is a “companion” case
  2. You cannot expunge a second-time offense because it is a “similar” offense.

More about Mimi Coffey

When people look for a Top DWI Attorney or Best DWI Attorney, they look for experience, certification, and respect in the legal community. Mimi Coffey is a nationally-renowned trial attorney, board-certified in DWI by the NCDD. She has been practicing for over 24 years and is an author of multiple DWI Defense textbooks. She is also a national and state-wide lecturer on the law.

The Coffey Firm handles a wide variety of cases, including Unlawful Carrying Weapon (UCW), Assault (including family violence), and Possession charges.

Mimi is also listed on several “top” directory listings such as DWI Lawyers for Wise County, DWI Lawyer Tarrant CountyDWI attorney Dallas County, DWI attorneys Collin County and DWI attorneys Parker County. Mimi is a caring DWI Lawyer in DFW, She is also involved in the Texas Tech School of Law foundation and enjoys using the skills she has developed to give back to the community.