Maryland DUI Arrest Records
Following a DUI charge, it makes sense to be concerned about your criminal record, or lack thereof, and how this arrest may impact you. As far as Maryland DUI arrest records, not so much the arrest record but the actual charges are often public. The citations that are issued go on the Maryland Judiciary Case Search which is available to the greater public. There are some jurisdictions that still take the old mug shots and they are part of the reports. More often than not, they are not reported anywhere else.
The public nature of your DUI arrest can have negative consequences on both your personal, and your professional life. If you want to know more about how your arrest record may impact you, and what steps you can take to potentially seal your record, consult a capable DUI attorney today.
Where Are Arrest Records Stored?
Generally, Maryland DUI arrest records are stored in the District Court. Depending on the county, they would be stored in one central location before they are moved back out for trial. But, if a person is assigned to Baltimore County, as an example, there is the Towson District Court, the Essex District, and Catonsville Court. If a person is assigned to the Catonsville District Court, chances are that file will be there while waiting for the trial. If a person is in Towson or Essex, that is the same presumption, but if for some reason it was changed at a later date, they would have to transfer the file over, so that file does travel from courthouse to courthouse. That is the main court file. The State Attorney will have their own file and so will the defense attorney.
Consequences of a Public Arrest Record
One consequence of Maryland DUI arrest records being public is, the charged individual becoming a target for schemes on the internet. Everyone is really full aware that there are these gimmicks on the internet where the person is told that they got their information, that they got DUI, but if the person pays them $5,000 they will make it go away. It is an extortion game. People will pay because it is just a great idea. If a person goes to court is found not guilty, their record is expunged and they have a copy of an Order of Expungement. However, if the defendant is found guilty or pleads guilty, that will be on their record online forever.
Difference Between Record-Sealing and Expungement
Maryland does not truly seal a person’s record. An expungement would remove the entirety of the case in order for the entire case to be sealed. That is what a person’s Maryland option would be. As far as sealing a person’s record, there has been talk about shielding and utilizing that with DUIs so that the greater public does not see it, but it remains visible to the lawyers, judges in the State, and other parties that have the interest in learning it all.
Options For Handling a Public Arrest Record
One of the options someone can consider if they are concerned about Maryland DUI arrest records is expungement if they are eligible. A DUI is not as straightforward as some of the other things. If a person received a probation before judgment, they are not eligible for expungement at all. But if they are found not guilty, given the judgment of acquittal/dismissal, then they have an absolute right to expunge the case from their record. A person’s record can be sealed only if the person qualifies properly, but it depends on the disposition of their case.
If someone is acquitted of their DUI charge, they should work with their DUI lawyer to file for an expungement before they leave the courthouse because it takes about an average of eight weeks for it to be fully processed and the case removed. If an individual wants to know more about record expungement and their own eligibility for expungement, they should consult a qualified DUI lawyer that can answer their questions.