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Brunswick County DUI Arrest Records and Expungement

Unless a person is a minor, DUI arrest records are always made available to the public in Brunswick. If the person is a minor charged with DUI, that will not be a matter of public record. Speak with a distinguished drunk driving attorney if you have any questions and would like to learn more about Brunswick DUI arrest records and expungement.

Expungements in Virginia are very narrowly available. If a person has been found guilty, they cannot obtain an expungement. If there has been a finding of sufficient evidence, they cannot obtain an expungement. A person can only get an expungement if they are found innocent of the crime alleged.

Record Sealing vs. Record Expungement

The only record sealing is that of juvenile court records. In circuit court, sensitive information like child pornography cases, that record is going to be sealed. This means, no one is able to access that file in the Clerk’s Office where it is kept. In cases of a very sensitive nature and juvenile cases, they are automatically sealed.

Storing Legal Records

The records are stored in the Brunswick County General District Clerk’s Office if it is misdemeanor DUI. In the case of a felony DUI, they are stored in the Circuit Court Clerk’s Office. In addition, they are published online through the Virginia Supreme Court website. Any person with internet access can do an online search of every county in Virginia for people charged with any variety of crimes.

Public Availability of Mug Shots

Unlike other documentation, mug shots are only kept at the Sheriff’s Office. Occasionally, for a particularly infamous or serious crime, they will publish a picture through the press but it might not be the mug shot.

In Brunswick, there is a weekly update in the local newspaper of every person that has been charged with a crime the previous week. This is limited to a tidbit covering who was charged, what law enforcement entity was involved, what the allegations are, and where the events in question took place.

Consequences of a Public Record

Learning about Brunswick DUI arrest records and expungement is important because there can be a number of negative consequences to a public arrest record. These repercussions can extend to important spheres such as employment opportunities and relationships with family and friends.

One particularly negative potential outcome is a defendant being fired by their employer as a direct result of the charges or conviction. The same can also be used against someone in custody and visitation cases.

In addition, in Virginia, if a person gets a felony conviction or a crime of moral turpitude, even if it is a misdemeanor, their testimony in court carries no weight and they can be impeached by conviction.

Impact of a Juvenile Court Ruling

In Juvenile Court, a guilty DUI verdict is not technically a conviction. Rather, it is an adjudication and only certain types stay on a criminal record. They are expunged as a matter of course, and that time varies depending on the nature of the crime in question.

This varies from case to case, so when it comes to Brunswick DUI arrest records and expungement, it may take a few years until the slate is wiped clean. Many juvenile court cases are taken under advisement to be dismissed after a certain number of years. That generally can be very helpful when it comes to future pursuit of employment.

Common Misconceptions

Some people think that if they perform their community service and their case is dismissed, that they should be able to get their record expunged so it does not come up on a criminal background check, but that is not the case.

Others hope that it may be possible after 20 years to look into the Brunswick DUI arrest records and expungement process. However, even if they have had no additional problems with the law, that is not an available option, as the criminal record is designed to exist in perpetuity.

Help from an Attorney

In Virginia, a person’s best option is being found not guilty. That will allow the individual to pursue an expungement. It is really the only way a person can deal with a public arrest record.

In order to increase the likelihood of achieving a desirable outcome, contact a lawyer with experience in this area of the law, and work with them to build the strongest case possible. Such an attorney will be well equipped to help you navigate your defense. Depending on the outcome, they will be able to help you take care of your Brunswick DUI arrest records and expungement.

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