Fredericksburg DUI arrest records are available to the public as any arrest that occurs in that jurisdiction will appear on the website run by the court where the person is arrested. This is true for general district court as well for circuit court. If a person is charged in the juvenile domestic court, it will not show up online but, any other charge is there to be viewed by anyone who is curious and decides to look in the other two courts.
Mug shots are not typically available to the public in Fredericksburg. There are some websites that accumulate mug shots in some jurisdictions. There is no reason why they could not be available in Fredericksburg, but so far, no one is providing those in the public.
If you have been charged with a DUI offense and have questions about your Fredericksburg arrest records, contact a qualified DUI lawyer as soon as possible. An attorney will discuss your concerns, guide you through your options.
The consequences of having a public arrest record are several. One is that it can affect the person’s reputation in the eyes of anyone who decides to look at that record. More importantly, and what commonly comes up for most people, is if they are applying for a job or have some other thing happening where a criminal background check is conducted: whoever pulls that record is going to see that the person has been arrested at some point in the past. This is going to be true even if the charge was dismissed.
If a person has an arrest record but not a conviction record, meaning they have been arrested, but their charge was disposed of by a dismissal in some kind, the primary way to deal with an arrest record is through the expungement process.
Sometimes when people think of expungement, they think of a record being completely removed. That is not what happens in Virginia. An expungement causes the record to be sealed. That means that it cannot be viewed by anyone absent a court order being entered, which would unseal that record.
To gain an expungement in Virginia, a person must file a petition to have a circuit court expunge their record. This means that someone is asking a court to order the record be sealed so that it does not appear on the website any longer, and perhaps more importantly, that the reference to the arrest record be removed from the central criminal record exchange, which is maintained by the FBI.
This is a process where a person files a petition and submits a new fingerprint card to the Virginia state police. The state police then match that card against the database and confirm to the circuit court that the person whose fingerprint card they received is the person who was arrested on that occasion.
At that point, a hearing can be held before the circuit court to demonstrate to the judge that there is some manifested injustice resulting from the person having an arrest record, which entitles them under Virginia law to have that record expunged. The judge is going to order the state police to cause all references to the arrest record to be removed from anywhere they exist.
State police can have 180 days to do that, and within that timeframe, they will provide confirmation that the record has been sealed. Once that has happened, the public will no longer be able to see any arrest record. The only circumstance under which someone could have that record viewed is by a court order causing the record to be opened. That only happens in the context of someone being sentenced on a felony charge and convicted at some point in the future.
The only context in which an unsealing of a record occurs is if a person is sentenced to or convicted of a felony and sentencing guidelines are being prepared. In that context, an arrest record is considered for purposes of those guidelines. For most people that is something, they are never going to be confronted with. So, for all intents and purposes, a sealing is just as good as having the record completely removed.
If you have been charged with a DUI in Fredericksburg, it is important to contact an experienced attorney. The attorney can guide you through the sometimes complex and intimidating process, as well as advise you on the best course of action at each of the various steps. A qualified attorney can also assist you in seeking an expungement of your Fredericksburg DUI arrest records, depending on the circumstances of your case.
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