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[r68] Rep. McMillin: Bill signed into law gives nonviolent offenders a fresh start
Start Date: 5/6/2013Start Time: 12:00 AM
End Date: 5/6/2013End Time: 11:59 PM
Entry Description
Bill signed into law gives nonviolent offenders a fresh start

STATEHOUSE – A bill to eliminate or expunge non-violent, felony or misdemeanor charges was signed into law today by Governor Mike Pence. Authored by State Representative Jud McMillin (R-Brookville), House Enrolled Act (HEA) 1482 gives ex-offenders a second chance and a means to get back to work.

“Article 1, Section 18 of our State Constitution outlines that the goal of our penal system shall be founded on reformation and not vindictive justice,” said Rep. McMillin. “Ex-offenders leave prison and immediately become labeled everywhere they go; all the while, doors close because of a permanent criminal record hanging over their head. With thirty-three other states having an expungement policy in place, I am glad to see Indiana join the rest of the nation in holding people accountable while allowing forgiveness and second chances to occur.”

HEA 1482 allows a sentencing court to seal the records of a person who was arrested but not prosecuted or whose conviction was overturned on appeal one year after the arrest was made. Additionally, the bill permits an individual to expunge a misdemeanor conviction after five years and certain non-violent and non-sexual Class D felony convictions eight years after the arrest was made.

A 2012 National Institute of Justice study shows, that nearly one-third of American adults have been arrested by age 23. Currently, state law allows an individual convicted of a crime to petition the sentencing court to restrict disclosure of such charges. The law also includes a provision that a sentencing court may convert a Class D felony conviction to a Class A misdemeanor after three years has transpired since completion of their sentence agreement.

An individual may only petition for expungement once in their lifetime, and HEA 1482 permits a law enforcement officer to access certain expunged records without a court order. Moreover, the bill makes the Indiana State Police maintain the criminal history information at the central repository.

“I understand it can be difficult for those with prior convictions to rebuild their lives in our society, and while we should certainly hold them accountable for their actions, those who have made mistakes should not be hindered forever,” said Rep. McMillin. “Making mistakes does not necessarily mean someone is a bad person, it means they are human, and in the right circumstances they should get a second chance. These people just want to move on with their lives and provide for their families. This law enables Hoosiers to do so.”

Last session, the Legislature passed a bill that sealed records for Class D felonies and misdemeanors for non-sexual and non-violent crimes if eight years have passed since completing the sentence. HEA 1482 is an extension of that bill which was called the Second Chance Act.

Visit www.in.gov/legislative for more information regarding HEA 1482.

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Contact Information:
Name: Ben Gavelek
Phone: (317) 234-9290
Email: bgavelek@iga.in.gov
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Entry Type:
Press Release
Entry Category:
  • Alerts and Notification
  • Announcements
  • IN.gov Category:
  • About Indiana
  • Law & Justice
  • Agency Name
    House of Representatives Republican Caucus

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