Senator Darius Brown has introduced two bills that continue his and his colleague’s reform of the criminal record expungement process in Delaware.
The first bill, Senate Bill 111, would require the State Bureau of Identification to identify and expunge cases eligible for automatic mandatory expungement on a monthly basis. SB 111 was released by the Senate Judiciary Committee on April 21 and has been just released yesterday from the Senate Finance Committee, so it will likely get a vote by the Senate soon.
|Senate Bill 111 Sponsors||Yes Votes||No Votes|
|Brown, Gay, S.McBride, Sturgeon, Townsend|
|Cooke, Chukwuocha, Dorsey Walker, K.Johnson, Bentz, Bolden, Lambert, Lynn, Morrison|
|Current Status — Out of Committee 4/27/21|
The second bill is already on its way to the House, after having been passed by the Senate unanimously yesterday. Senate Bill 112 would expand the eligibility of mandatory expungements filed with SBI for certain additional convictions – regardless of a person’s prior or subsequent criminal record. These offenses include marijuana possession, drug paraphernalia possession, underage possession or consumption of alcohol, and cases involving multiple violation convictions. Currently, a person can obtain an expungement for those convictions only if they have no other criminal record.
Senate Bill 112 also allows for certain, low-level felony convictions to be eligible for mandatory expungement after a certain period of time. For example, felony convictions for drug possession would be eligible after 5 years and specific non-violent felonies would be eligible after 10 years if a person has no prior or subsequent convictions.
Finally, Senate Bill 112 would make all cases eligible for an adult expungement also eligible for a juvenile expungement.
|Senate Bill 112 Sponsors||Yes Votes||No Votes|
|Brown, Gay, Lockman, Lopez, S.McBride, Pinkey, Poore, Sokola, Sturgeon, Townsend, Walsh||Brown, Ennis, Gay, Hansen, Lockman, Mantzavinos, Paradee, Pinkney, Poore, S.McBride, Sokola, Sturgeon, Townsend, Walsh, Bonini, Hocker, Lawson, Lopez, Pettyjohn, Richardson, Wilson|
|Lynn, Longhurst, Cooke, Chukwuocha, Dorsey-Walker, Bentz, K.Johnson, Morrison, WIlson-Anton|
|Current Status —||Passed Senate 21-0|
“Two years ago, Gov. John Carney signed into law legislation I sponsored that successfully made our criminal justice system smarter and fairer for all Delawareans,” said Senator Brown, chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
“By working with restorative justice advocates and our law enforcement community, we have identified ways to help more people to obtain an expungement and, in doing so, open avenues for more Delawareans to obtain the education, housing and jobs currently denied to them due to the pervasive repercussions of their worst mistake,” he said. “Even with the passage of this legislation today, our work must continue until we’ve replaced barriers to opportunity with pathways to prosperity for all Delawareans.”