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Zoey_ JD
Zoey_ JD, JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 27770
Experience:  Admitted to NYS Criminal defense bar in 1989. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
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i was arrested and charged with criminal trespass. i only entered

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i was arrested and charged with criminal trespass. i only entered the home because the person was having a conversation with my mother and he was intoxicated so i wanted to make sure my mom was ok. thats all.. a witness said that i entered the house which i did only for that reason. On the Stand the person was asked if i entered his house he said. no... but when the witness came to the stand she said i did.i was given 4 years of reporting probation. I have completed that time.. but my record is with this criminal trespass which is my knowledge a felony. My P/O never had anything bad towards me.. i went to all my visits no problems what's so ever. This one charge is slowing my down.. as far as careers.. i have no other cases or chargers just this one. Do you think it can be wiped of my record?

My name is XXXXX XXXXX I am an experienced criminal lawyer.

Unfortunately, I don't have very good news for you. Pennsylvania is one of the strictest states when it comes to removing something from your record. They will only expunge summary offenses. Other convictions cannot be removed from your record for quite some time.

In order to get it expunged yin Pennsylvania, you have to be over 70 years old and have remained out of trouble for ten years following the completion of your sentence, or it can be expunged three years after your death. Neither prospect will do you much good now.

Another remedy -- which would not erase the record -- would be to see if the governor of the PA would grant you a pardon. These are very difficult to obtain, but they do get granted every now and again. You could apply for it by yourself and at least not have to incur the expense of a lawyer. You would need the official form from the Pennsylvania Board of Pardons in Harrisburgh. Here's a link to a sample form so that you can see the work it will entail.

The only other option is also a longshot. That is is to retain a lawyer to reopen your case and petition the judge to have the matter dismissed in the interest of justice.

This would not be supported by the penal and procedural laws in your state and also the petition would have to come before the very same judge who presided over your trial, so it may be a longer than longshot. However, a judge always has power under Equity to grant a petition like that even when the law doesn't provide for it, if it is necessary to prevent an injustice from occurring. So with a particulary compelling argument, if the judge is willing to hear the petition in the first place, it could happen for you.

Courts are sparing in their use of the equity power and many judges will not touch this at all, but it is something you could explore with a local criminal lawyer who would be able to tell you how viable this would be with your particular judge and whether it would be worth the money you'd have to lay out to get it done.

I wish you luck.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

i was charged with this in 2005 and i haven't gotten into any trouble. this is what i was charged with.

(a) Buildings and occupied structures.--
(1) A person commits an offense if, knowing that he is not licensed or privileged to do so, he:
(i) enters, gains entry by subterfuge or surreptitiously remains in any building or occupied structure or separately secured or occupied portion thereof; or
(ii) breaks into any building or occupied structure or separately secured or occupied portion thereof.
(2) An offense under paragraph (1)(i) is a felony of the third degree, and an offense under subparagraph (1)(ii) is a felony of the second degree.
(3) As used in this subsection:

"Breaks into." To gain entry by force, breaking, intimidation, unauthorized opening of locks, or through an opening not designed for human access.



The door was wide open because the person invited my mother inside his home to talk and i heard screaming soo i walked up the doorway. why was i charged this? and i think its wrong how they charge you with this and can damage your whole life because u have a record now. the judge that gave me the charge is still an active judge and she seemed cool when i had to get in front of her again.. and she gave me friendly advice about staying out of trouble if i would of known this was a felony i would of kept fighting for it. this is one of the dumbest felonies i can think of. How much would it cost roughly to re open this case and fight for the record to be clear? i mean i didn't have no bad talk from my P/O or any bad talk from the judge. i was young and this was my first case. there has to be something i can do..

Hello Luis,

Back in 2005, if you felt that the verdict was unjust, you could have appealed it to try to get the verdict overturned. But you only had 30 days after your conviction to file a notice of appeal. It is much too late to appeal the verdict and get it reversed at this time.

Lawyer's charge their clients based on the amount of time they think that they will have to spend to get the job done. Most lawyers bill out their services for at the very least, $200/hour. You could contact the Pennsylvania Bar Association's Lawyer Referral service. They should be able to give you a more specific going rate for your part of the country. They can then refer you to a lawyer if you want one, who is capable of doing the job. Their $50 referral fee includes a half hour free consultation with an attorney. If he doesn't think he can do anything for you, he will tell you so. If he agrees to give it a try then he believes you've got a chance to succeed.

To reopen your case he would have to file a written petition with the court and serve a copy on the DA who would then need to respond to it. He'd ask for a dismissal for you or if the judge won't grant that outright for an opportunity to argue your position at a hearing.

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