A criminal record may be expunged in the state of Arizona, which means that the conviction will be destroyed or erased. Arizona state statutes refer to expungement as “setting aside a conviction”. Expungement also prohibits the general public from accessing files or information stored in computers regarding the charges. However, the conviction can still be accessed for future criminal prosecutions.
Juvenile records may be expunged under Arizona state law. Adult convictions may also be expunged in some instances including:
The defendant’s criminal charges have been dismissed
The defendant was acquitted at their trial
The person’s conviction was overturned on appeal or subjected to post-conviction relief with a final mandate being issued
A defendant who has had provided a DNA sample for the purposes of criminal investigation may petition to have the DNA profile removed from Arizona identification authorities
Minors who have been sentenced to probation may have their record expunged if they successfully complete the probation and were younger than 18 years old at the time of the crime
In order to obtain an expungement, the defendant usually must petition with the superior court located in the county where the conviction occurred. They will be required to submit all relevant documents and may have to pay a filing fee. Once a court has ordered an expungement, the records may no longer be accessed. Any references to the conviction will generally omit details and will only indicate that the record has been expunged.