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A prior criminal charge can follow a person around for years, damaging their career and job prospects, limiting what they can achieve, keeping them in the shadows, and driving them to the margins of society.
The good news is, there’s hope.
Oklahoma law provides broad eligibility for people with prior criminal charges to seal the records from their arrest and court proceedings, empowering defendants to put the past behind them and go forward like none of it ever happened.
At Ball Morse Lowe, we don’t believe a criminal case ends when the charges are resolved.
We believe a case ends when the client can fully move on.
“I love doing expungements,” says Brian Ted Jones, “because it means helping a person get their life back.”
With a decade of experience in criminal defense, Brian has helped clients expunge everything from major felonies to minor misdemeanors, and from victim’s protective orders to civil actions.
“The first step is knowing the expungement statutes frontwards and backwards,” says Brian. “The second step is working diligently and swiftly to move a person who’s eligible for an expungement through the process as quickly and painlessly as possible.”
To be eligible for an expungement in Oklahoma, a person’s case must first fall into one of several categories where the law explicitly provides for an expungement.
“An easy example,” says Brian, “is a person acquitted of a crime at a jury trial. They’re eligible to expunge all the records associated with that case. But the law also extends that eligibility to other classes of people, including those who’ve completed certain kinds of probation and waited a set period of years.”
The process doesn’t always end there, though. It’s rare, but sometimes an expungement petition can draw an objection, even when the case is clearly eligible to be sealed. That’s why it’s critical to hire a seasoned litigator with experience defending their clients’ expungement rights.
“If another party does object to your expungement,” says Brian, “you have to set the case for hearing and argue it out in front of a judge, who’ll decide whether your privacy interest in the expungement is outweighed by a public interest in maintaining the records.”
In addition to expunging criminal records, Brian also has experience obtaining pardons from the Oklahoma Board of Pardon and Parole (sometimes a prerequisite to an expungement), as well as sealing records in victim’s protective order (VPO) cases and even civil records under the Oklahoma Open Records Act.
“I start thinking about the expungement as soon as I start working on a new criminal case,” says Brian. “And while it’s not possible to make every case expungeable, expungeability is something I always keep in mind, especially when I’m representing a young person. Because to a young person facing criminal charges, the difference between an expungeable result and a non-expungeable result can absolutely mean the difference between having a career and not having a career.”
Consultation — Contact Our Firm
Learn more about how he can combat your dui charges by contacting Ball Morse Lowe, PLLC, at 405-701-5355 or via email. We offer a initial consultation and make jail visits as needed.