SB 513, as amended, Hancock. Diversion programs: sealed records.
Existing law provides that, upon successful completion of a drug diversion program or deferred entry of judgment program, the court may order the sealing of court and arrest records of the diverted charges where the interests of justice would be served, as specified.
This bill would provide that in any case where a person is arrested and successfully completes a diversion program administered by a prosecuting attorney in lieu of filing an accusatory pleading, the person may petition the superior court that would have had jurisdiction over the matter for an order to seal the records of the arresting agency and related court files and records, and the court may issue that order if the court finds that doing so will be in furtherance of justice. The bill would provide that the Department of Justice shall continue to be able to maintain and disseminate any records or documents received or maintained by it, as authorized by law.
Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: yes. State-mandated local program: no.
The people of the State of California do enact as follows:
The Legislature finds and declares that in order
2to allow a person who has been arrested and who successfully
3completes a diversion program administered by a prosecuting
4attorney in lieu of filing an accusatory pleading to become a law
5abiding and productive member of society, the records of the
6arresting agency and related court files and records shall be sealed.
Section 851.87 is added to the Penal Code, to read:
(a) (1) In any case where a person is arrested and
9successfully completes a diversion program administered by a
10prosecuting attorney in lieu of filing an accusatory pleading, the
11person may, two years after successful completion of the diversion
12program as determined by the prosecuting attorney, petition the
13superior court that would have had jurisdiction over the matter to
14issue an order to seal the records of the arresting agency and related
15court files and records, and the court may order those records
16sealed if the court finds that doing so will be in furtherance of
17justice. A copy of the petition shall be served on the law
18enforcement agency and the prosecuting attorney of the county or
19city having jurisdiction over the
begin delete offense at least 10 days prior to The prosecuting
20the hearing.end delete
24attorney and the law enforcement agency, through the prosecuting
25attorney, may present evidence to the court at the hearing.
26(2) If the order is made, the clerk of the court shall thereafter
27not allow access to any records concerning the case, including the
28court file, index, register of actions, or other similar records.
29(3) If the order is made, the court shall give a copy of the order
30to the person and inform the person that he or she may thereafter
31state that he or she was not arrested for the charge.
32(4) The person may, except as specified in subdivisions (b), (c),
33and (d), indicate in response to any question concerning the
34person’s prior criminal record that the person was not arrested.
35(5) Subject to subdivisions (b), (c), and (d), a record pertaining
36to the arrest shall not, without the person’s permission, be used in
37any way that could result in the denial of any employment, benefit,
P3 1(6) A sealing order made pursuant to this subdivision shall not
2be forwarded to the Department of Justice to be included or notated
3in the department’s manual or electronic fingerprint image or
4criminal history record systems. Any sealing order made pursuant
5to this subdivision and received by the Department of Justice need
6not be processed by the department.
7(b) The person shall be advised that, regardless of the person’s
8successful completion of the diversion program, the arrest shall
9be disclosed by the Department of Justice in response to any peace
10officer application request, and that, notwithstanding subdivision
11(a), this section does not relieve the person of the obligation to
12disclose the arrest in response to any direct question contained in
13any questionnaire or application for a position as a peace officer,
14as defined in Section 830.
15(c) The person shall be advised that, regardless of the
16successful completion of the diversion program, the arrest shall
17be disclosed by the Department of Justice or the court in which
18the matter was heard in response to any subsequent inquiry by the
19district attorney, court, probation department, or counsel for the
20person concerning the person’s eligibility for any diversion
21program administered by a prosecuting attorney in the future.
22(d) A sealing order made pursuant to this section shall not apply
23to any record or document received or maintained by the
24Department of Justice. Upon issuing the sealing order, the court
25shall advise the person that, notwithstanding the issuance of a
26sealing order pursuant to this section, the Department of Justice
27shall continue to be able to maintain and disseminate any records
28or documents received or maintained by the department, as
29authorized by law.