Travis County delays expunction expo due to COVID-19, application portal remains open

Pride flag-raising ceremony at Travis County building

FILE — The Travis County Government building June 29, 2021. (Frank Martinez/KXAN)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Trying to get an arrest off your record might take a little longer due to COVID-19, Travis County officials said.

An expunction expo, where county officials and legal professionals help people clear their names from old arrests, was set for Jan. 15, but the surge in COVID-19 cases forced its postponement.

County officials haven’t set a new date for the expo, but once they do, more than 300 people with approved applications to attend the expo will be notified.

“We remain committed to working with the public to help clear eligible cases from criminal histories for free and also to ensuring the highest levels of safety for our community in that endeavor,” the announcement said.

In addition to having old arrests taken off public records, which could give participants an easier time finding a job, being approved for housing or getting financial aid, the job placement and recruiting company Indeed will be at the expo to help people make profiles and resumes on their site.

While the county figures out a new date for the expo, the online application is open for people who think they would qualify for expunction. Only crimes committed in Travis County are eligible for expunction at the expo.

Here are some conditions that could qualify someone for expunction:

  • You were arrested, but a charge was never filed or was not billed by the grand jury
  • You have a criminal charge that a judge dismissed
  • You successfully completed a Diversion Program, such as Pretrial Diversion, Drug Court, etc.
  • You were acquitted on your charge by a judge or jury (usually by a finding of “Not Guilty”), or appellate court, or
  • You were convicted of a crime but later pardoned by the Governor of Texas or the President of the United States.

The expo is a collaboration between Travis County District Attorney Jose Garza, Travis County Attorney Delia Garza, Travis County District Clerk Velva L. Price, and Pflugerville City Council Member Rudy Metayer.  Legal services will be provided by members of the Travis County Law Library, Capital Area Private Defender Service, Travis County Public Defender’s Office, and Volunteer Legal Services.

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