Office of House Bill AnalysisS.B. 840
By: West
Criminal Jurisprudence


Currently, a person who has been arrested for the commission of a felony or
misdemeanor is entitled to have all records expunged provided certain
conditions and procedures are fulfilled.  S.B. 840 establishes the
automatic expunction of certain arrest records under specified conditions
and provides procedures for the expunction. 


It is the opinion of the Office of House Bill Analysis that this bill does
not expressly delegate any additional rulemaking authority to a state
officer, department, agency or institution. 


SECTION 1.  Amends Article 55.01, Code of Criminal Procedure, to provide
that the provision entitling a person to expunction of criminal records
only applies if, among other conditions, there was no court ordered
supervision, rather than probation. Prohibits the court from ordering,
under this section, the expunction of records and files relating to an
arrest for an offense for which a person is subsequently acquitted, if the
offense for which the person was acquitted arose out of a criminal episode
and the person was convicted of or remains subject to prosecution for at
least one other offense occurring during the criminal episode.  Makes
conforming and nonsubstantive changes. 

SECTION 2.  Amends Article 55.02, Code of Criminal Procedure, as follows:

Art. 55.02.  PROCEDURE FOR EXPUNCTION.  Sec. 1.  Requires the trial court
presiding over a case in which the defendant was acquitted, at the request
of the defendant and after notice to the state and a hearing, to enter an
order of expunction for a person entitled to expunction under Article 55.01
(Right to Expunction) not later than the 30th day after the date of the
acquittal. Requires the court, upon acquittal, to advise the defendant of
the right to expunction.  Requires the defendant to provide to the court
all of the information required in a petition for expunction. 

Sec. 2.  Authorizes a person who is entitled to expunction of records and
files under certain provisions of Article 55.01 to file a petition for
expunction in a district court for the county in which the person was
arrested or in the county where the offense was alleged to have occurred.
Makes conforming changes. 

Sec.  3.  Requires the trial court to require, rather than direct, any
state agency that sent information concerning the arrest to a central
federal depository to request such depository to return all records and
files subject to the order of expunction, in an order of expunction issued
under this article.  Authorizes the person who is the subject of the
expunction order, as well as an agency protesting the expunction, to appeal
the court's decision in the same manner as civil cases.  Requires the order
of expunction entered by the trial court to have attached and incorporated
by reference a copy of the judgement of acquittal and to include certain
prescribed information.  Requires the clerk of the court to send a copy, in
the manner prescribed, to the Crime Records Service of the Department of
Public Safety (DPS), as well as to each official or agency or other entity
of this state or of any political subdivision of this state designated by
the person who is the subject of the order, rather than an official or
agency named in the order that there is reason to believe has any  records
of files that are subject to the order.  Requires DPS to notify, rather
than send a copy, any central federal depository of criminal records by any
means, including electronic transmission, of the order.  Deletes language
providing that there must be reason to believe the federal depository has
records in order to be required to notify the depository.  Assigns
subsection designations to this section and makes conforming and
nonsubstantive changes. 

Sec.  4.  Authorizes the court, in the case of a person who is the subject
of an expunction order on the basis of an acquittal, to provide in the
order that a law enforcement agency and the prosecuting attorney retain
records and files necessary to conduct a subsequent investigation and
prosecution of a person other than the person who is the subject of the
expunction order. Exempts the records retained under this section from the
provisions of Articles 55.03 (Effect of Expunction) and 55.04 (Violation of
Expunction Order) if there is a subsequent investigation and prosecution of
a person other than the person who is the subject of the expunction order.
Makes conforming and nonsubstantive changes. 

Sec.  5.  Makes conforming and nonsubstantive changes.

SECTION 3.  Amends Article 55.03, Code of Criminal Procedure, to make
conforming changes. 

SECTION 4.  Amends Article 55.06, Code of Criminal Procedure, to prohibit
records relating to the suspension or revocation of a driver's license,
permit, or privilege to operate a motor vehicle from being expunged under
this chapter, except as provided in Sections 524.015 (Effect of Disposition
of Criminal Charge on Driver's License Suspension) and 724.048
(Relationship of Administrative Proceeding to Criminal Proceeding),
Transportation Code.  Deletes text regarding the prohibition to expunge
certain records.  Makes standard recodification changes.   

SECTION 5.  Makes application of this Act prospective.

SECTION 6.  Provides that this Act takes effect only if a specific
appropriation for the implementation of this Act is provided in H.B. 1
(General Appropriations Act), Acts of the 76th Legislature, Regular
Session, 1999. Provides that if no specific appropriation is provided in
H.B. 1, the General Appropriations Act, this Act has no effect. 

SECTION 7.  Emergency clause.
            Effective date: upon passage.