Your conviction may have been expunged under the Arkansas Youthful Offender Service Act if you were convicted between 1975 and 1994 and sentenced under Arkansas Code Annotated 16-93-1201.
Before you read this blog, you should read these two other blogs first IF you are looking to expunge a misdemeanor or a felony in Arkansas:
The “Youthful Offender” statutes are now repealed but were somewhat recodified when the Community Punishment/Corrections Act became law in 1994. This blog is about convictions between 1975 and 1994. If the person was an eligible offender he could be sentenced under the Act. An eligible offender was less than 26 years of age at the time of commission of the offense and the offense had to be one other than a capital felony offense, first or second degree murder, rape, kidnapping or aggravated robbery.
Two previous felony convictions rendered a person ineligible and expunged convictions could be considered for eligibility purposes. The 1983 Act allowed any age person be sentenced under the Act (except for the prohibited offenses listed above) and an offender under the age of 26 at the time of commission of the offense with no more than one prior felony was eligible whereas a person over that age with one or more prior felonies was ineligible.
It was discretionary to the judge and prosecutor as to whether a defendant was sentenced under the Act. However, if you were sentenced under the act expungement was mandatory. Upon completion of sentence or probation the Commissioner of Correction was mandated to issue a certificate of expungement.
If you were sentenced under this a petition to expunge/seal is really not necessary as it is to happen automatically but the person seeking expungement should call the Arkansas Department of Correction and request a certificate of expungement.
An expungement under this act was deemed a ministerial act. This is an expungement act where the Commissioner of Correction issues the expungement. Every other expungement in Arkansas is issued by an order from a judge.
This is also a law where a person could actually be sentenced to the ADC for a prison term and still get his record expunged. Most other expungement statutes in Arkansas do not allow you to expunge your record if you were sentenced to ADC prison time.
What If I Don’t Qualify to Expunge or Seal My Arkansas Criminal Charges Under the First Offender Act?
Read one of our other blogs on expunging criminal charges under a different statute. Or call one of our Fayetteville, Fort Smith, or Van Buren Arkansas Criminal Defense Attorneys at (479) 782-1125 for a free consultation.
I’ve written blogs on the two most common statutes used to expunge misdemeanors and felonies in Arkansas and they are:
The rest of the Arkansas expungement statutes are much rarer: