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Miracles Do Happen: Clearing Our Client’s Background

Miracle, Geoffrey Reynolds LawyerGoing above & beyond! So proud of Coffey Firm attorney Geoffrey Reynolds who proved that miracles do happen! Years ago a law enforcement government employee accidentally inverted a digit and made it look like our client had a prior DWI that belonged to someone else. We were told it would take an expunction (fees & a legal process) to clear this up when it was not our client’s fault. Geoff spent 6 months working on this, fighting law enforcement (multiple law enforcement divisions refused to call him back) and was finally successful in fixing this grave error at no cost to our client. Now all criminal records are accurate and our teacher client will no longer be denied jobs for a DWI she never had.

A little background:

When we were nearing the end of this client’s case, the District Attorney started talking about a prior DWI from a different county. Our client told us that she had never even been to the county of the alleged conviction! After investigating a bit, we discovered that DPS incorrectly placed this prior DWI on our client’s DPS criminal background. Not only that, the background associated 2006 conviction to a 1994 arrest from our client’s actual county of residence. Digging even deeper, we discovered that this conviction belonged to someone with an who’s ID had one different digit. This means that some law enforcement agency screwed up our client’s background by putting the wrong digit.

We eventually cleared up that confusion on our client’s case, but then faced the task of fixing our client’s background. Geoff started working by contacting the Tarrant County District Attorney’s office to talk to their expunction department. Geoff was not able to reach the DA in charge of that department, but spoke with her assistant. They directed him to contact the Tarrant County Sheriff’s Department’s error resolution section, who never returned his calls despite multiple voice messages. Eventually, he contacted the DPS error resolution department itself, who still took their sweet time in responding. After a few months of work, DPS finally contacted our office and told us that they cleared our client’s background. This happened without our client needing to pay any filing fees and without needing any court involvement.

Miracles Really Do Happen!

Texas Expunctions & “Criminal Episodes”

Mimi Coffey DWI Lawyer, Texas DWI, Texas Nondisclosure, Texas Expunction


Getting an expunction in Texas is a way for people to legally eliminate information about their criminal records, including arrests. Obtaining an Expunction can be difficult. They become much more complex if you face multiple charges. To obtain an expunction, there are certain requirements that you must meet. However, you may be ineligible on a charge depending on the circumstances surrounding your arrest. If you are looking for an “expunction lawyer near me”, contact our office. We will discuss your eligibility for an expunction.

Texas Code of Criminal Procedure § 55.01 deals with expunctions. Specifically, subsection (c) states, in essence, that a court may not expunge one charge if the person has a pending or past conviction 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 actor directs or inflicts the harm on more than one person or item of property, under the following circumstances:
    • the offenses are committed pursuant to [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. Look at the “same or similar offenses” language above. Courts interpret the “same or similar offenses” language as saying a second DWI is NOT eligible for expunction. According to those courts, a DWI 2 is a “similar” offense to a first-time DWI. So, even a “not guilty” is not enough.

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), Theft, 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.