§ 12-1-12.1. Sealing of records of persons acquitted or otherwise exonerated by operation of law or by motion.
(a) By operation of law, the court shall automatically seal the records of any criminal case that was dismissed pursuant to the district court rule of criminal procedure 48(a), including all records of the division of criminal identification established by § 12-1-4 without the requirement of filing a motion under the following circumstances:
(1) Cases dismissed pursuant to the district court rule of criminal procedure 48(a) on or after January 1, 2023, shall be automatically sealed ninety (90) days after the dismissal; or
(2) Cases dismissed pursuant to the district court rule of criminal procedure 48(a) prior to January 1, 2023, shall be sealed administratively by the court clerk at the request of the defendant and any sealing order of the district court entered as a result shall be sent electronically by the clerk of the court to the bureau of criminal identification established by § 12-1-4 within five (5) days of the entry of the order and shall be carried out within ninety (90) days of the receipt of the order.
(b) Any person who is acquitted or otherwise exonerated of all counts in a criminal case, including, but not limited to, dismissals not described in subsection (a) of this section or filing of a no true bill or no information, may file a motion for the sealing of his or her court records in the case.
(1) Any person filing a motion for sealing his or her court records pursuant to this section shall give notice of the hearing date set by the court to the department of the attorney general and the police department that originally brought the charge against the person at least ten (10) days prior to the hearing.
(2) If the court, after the hearing at which all relevant testimony and information shall be considered, finds that the person is entitled to the sealing of the records, it shall order the sealing of the court records of the person in that case.
(3) The clerk of the court shall, within forty-five (45) days of the order of the court granting the motion, place under seal the court records in the case in which the acquittal, dismissal, no true bill, no information, or other exoneration has been entered.
(c) Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, in all cases involving a filing subsequent to a plea of not guilty, guilty, or nolo contendere to a charge of a crime involving domestic violence, the court having jurisdiction over the case shall retain the records of the case for a period of three (3) years from the date of filing. The records shall not be expunged or sealed for a period of three (3) years from the date of the filing.
(d) The defendant shall be advised at the hearing that any and all bail money relating to a case that remains on deposit and is not claimed at the time of sealing shall be escheated to the state’s general treasury in accordance with chapter 12 of title 8.
History of Section.
P.L. 1988, ch. 638, § 2; P.L. 1996, ch. 386, § 1; P.L. 2001, ch. 303, § 3; P.L. 2013, ch. 301, § 1; P.L. 2013, ch. 416, § 1; P.L. 2015, ch. 97, § 2; P.L. 2015, ch. 109, § 2; P.L. 2021, ch. 141, § 1, effective July 3, 2021; P.L. 2021, ch. 142, § 1, effective July 3, 2021; P.L. 2022, ch. 253, § 1, effective June 28, 2022; P.L. 2022, ch. 254, § 1, effective June 28, 2022.