Finding Out Your Correct Case Information
If you want to clean up your record, a good place to start is the Fresno County Superior Court website providing case information. Go to the Odyssey portal to find your case information. If you are unsuccessful in finding your case information in that manner, usually because the case is old, then go to the fourth floor of the main courthouse and ask a judicial assistant for assistance in locating your case information.
Incorrect Information on Your Criminal History
Assuming that the information is from a California conviction, you will need to contact the Record Review unit of the California Department of Justice. You may reach them by email at email@example.com or by telephone at (916) 227-3835.
Expungement (PC § 1203.4)
Must meet ALL of the following requirements:
- Have been convicted of a felony or a misdemeanor; and
- Have fulfilled the requirements of probation (including misdemeanor probation) for entire term of probation; and
- Not currently serving a sentence for any offense, not currently on probation (including misdemeanor probation), not currently charged with any offense.
Dismisses case. May help with state licensing. The dismissal does not permit you to own a gun, does not clear your DMV record, and does not prevent the dismissed case from being charged as a prior conviction. Relief is not available for infractions. The expungement form permits the court to reduce some offenders to misdemeanors prior to expunging the conviction. If the court reduces the offense to a misdemeanor, that reduction is usually pursuant to Penal Code section 17, subdivision (b). If a felony conviction is later reduced to a misdemeanor pursuant to Penal Code section 17, subdivision (b), the California prohibition on possessing a firearm as a result of the felony no longer applies. (People v. Gilbreth (2007) 156 Cal.App.4th 53, 55.) However, due to the complexity of the law, both federal and State, related to firearms possession, you should check with a licensed firearms dealer whether you may lawfully possess a firearm before doing so. It should be noted that a reduction of a felony conviction to a misdemeanor pursuant to Proposition 47 will NOT permit you to to own a firearm. (Pen. Code, § 1170.18, subd. (k).)
Instructions: You will need to fill out several forms. The forms are petition for expungement (CR-180), proposed expungement order (CR-181), CLETS request, MC-210, and proof of service. On the CR-181, fill out the form only to and including the case number. The court will fill out the rest of the CR-181 form. If you are unable to fit sufficient information into the forms, you may have to also use the MC-025 or MC-031 attachments. You may want to check out the more detailed instructions and all forms. You will then have a friend fill out the proof of service. Your friend will serve a copy of all the documents except the MC-210 and the proof of service on the District Attorney by mailing them or personally delivering them to the District Attorney's office. Personal service works best because the courts will not hear your petition until the District Attorney has signed a document indicating it has been served. The proof of service provided has a place for an employee of the District Attorney to sign indicating receipt. Make another copy of all the documents you have, including the filled-out and signed proof of service and CR-115 form. You will then take all of the documents to the clerk's office on the Fourth Floor of the Courthouse. File the originals. Ask that the clerk stamp your copy. You may then receive notice in about six months to come to court for another hearing. Alternatively, the court may rule on your request without holding a hearing. The judicial assistant will not charge a fee for filing the paperwork. However, the court is permitted by Penal Code section 1203.4 to charge you a fee of up to $ 150.00 in court fees and $ 120.00 in probation fees for the expungement. You will need to pay any fees before the court will provide you with the written expungement order. The reason why the court asked you to fill out the financial declaration is so that the judge can consider your financial situation in deciding whether you will have to pay the fees.
The Fresno County Probation Department will sometimes assist people with expungements. They will do so only when you were supervised by the probation department. Call (559) 600-3420 and ask for Juanita Granados to have them handle the expungement in cases where you had been supervised by the Fresno County Probation Department. Due to the long wait involved (sometimes over a year) that it takes for probation to handle the expungement, it is generally recommended that you fill out the paperwork yourself instead of using probation.
Certificate of Rehabilitation
In order to qualify for a certificate of rehabilitation, you must meet ALL of these requirements:
- At least 7 years (more in some cases) must have passed since discharge from parole or completion of sentence, whichever is later; and
- After completion of sentence or discharge from parole, must have lived an honest and upright life, and fully complied with all laws; and
- Must have lived within California for the last 5 years; and
- Either have been sent to prison or received a PC § 1203.4 dismissal.
Misdemeanor offenses are ineligible for certificates of rehabilitation, unless the offense required sex registration.
- Relieve some sex offenders of duty to register.
- Enhance potential for obtaining state licensing.
- Serve as documentation of rehabilitation to present to an employer.
- Automatically apply for a pardon.
- Dismiss case.
- Eliminate most legal consequences of a conviction.
Reduction of Offense to a Misdemeanor
Certain offenses in California are punishable alternatively either as a felony or a misdemeanor. Those offenses are called "wobblers." If you were convicted of a wobbler as a felony, the judge may be permitted to later reduce the offense to a misdemeanor. The judge is permitted to reduce the offense so long as your were not sentenced to state prison and the judge did not stay a prison term. If the court merely placed you on probation (suspended imposition of judgment as opposed to suspending execution of judgment), then the judge may later reduce the offense to a misdemeanor.
How do you get the wobbler reduced to a misdemeanor? The easiest way is petition for an expungement (see above). The judicial council form for an expungement provides the judge with the option of reducing a wobbler to a misdemeanor. Alternatively, you can file a motion to reduce any wobblers using the forms and instructions provided by the San Diego County Law Library. The address of the Fresno County Courthouse is 1100 Van Ness Avenue, Fresno, CA 93724. The address of the Fresno County District Attorney is 2220 Tulare Street, Suite 1000, Fresno, CA 93721,
Factual Finding of Innocence
You may be able to obtain a factual finding of innocence. The California Department of Justice has prepared a petition for a factual finding of innocence for use in cases where no charges were ever filed.
Eliminate Drug Conviction For Immigration Purposes If You Completed Deferred Entry of Judgment For The Offense
Recently, the California legislature enacted Penal Code section 1203.43. If you are a non-citizen and completed deferred entry of judgment, it is recommended that you read Penal Code section 1203.43 and forms. To be eligible for the dismissal, you must have participated in the deferred entry of judgment and had the case dismissed based upon your successful completion of the program.
Some felony convictions are eligible for reduction to Proposition 47.
Proposition 64 greatly changed California laws regarding marijuana and concentrated cannabis ("hash" or "hashish"). People convicted might be eligible for having their offense reduced to a misdemeanor or an infraction, or to have the case dismissed.