Celebrating 10 years! 2007-2017

Requesting criminal records

I'm a bar applicant with a criminal record (no arrest though dharamsala10/12/17
Have you taken the bar exam in your state yet? I’ve actual trickydick10/12/17
All you need is there refusal in writing to submit. Unfortun lawyer210/12/17
trickydick-no but I applied for the February 2018 bar exam. dharamsala10/12/17
Don't say on your application that the police "are not coope pauperesq10/12/17
I did c&f Work for a state agency before. If someone submitt downwardslope10/12/17
I just narrated the incident fully and mentioned at the end dharamsala10/12/17
“and the PD never responded.” I think the bar would p maxwell10/12/17
So were you charged with a crime? Convicted? Pled guilty? 3lol10/12/17
I was never arrested , charged, convicted, or sentenced of a dharamsala10/12/17
What else could it be? I know of in the UK they have somethi notreallyalawyer10/12/17
I was never arrested, but I was issued a trespass warning, w dharamsala10/12/17
Kind of odd as CA and NY accept undocumented aliens as membe notreallyalawyer10/12/17
Dealt with this issue as well. I did what you did - narrate jd4hire10/12/17
Is there any point in hiring a C&F attorney at this early st dharamsala10/12/17
No. They want to know if you disclosed it. If you did, you a downwardslope10/12/17
There isn't even a problem yet. Why waste money on an attor pauperesq10/12/17
Lawyer2 is right. I was arrested and the state bar wanted a trickydick10/12/17
Why didn't you take the bar earlier? Did you fail a class an sergey10/12/17
Joe Biden became a member of the bar with law school plagiar notreallyalawyer10/12/17
When did you graduate? dharamsala10/12/17
2002. notreallyalawyer10/13/17
How have you been paying the bills since then? dharamsala10/13/17
doc review notreallyalawyer10/13/17
I had gotten a ticket for running a redlight in this random thirdtierlaw10/12/17
I've never done this in NJ, but here's a link: http://www.nj guyingorillasuit10/13/17
The criminal activity happened in MA. I have no crimina dharamsala10/13/17
CORI check might net it. https://www.mass.gov/criminal-reco jd4hire10/13/17
Nothing shows up because I was never arrested or fingerprint dharamsala10/13/17
What makes you think you have a criminal record if you were fettywap10/13/17
Yes, I clarified on my application that I was never arrested dharamsala10/13/17
If you weren't free to leave then you were under arrest. The notreallyalawyer10/13/17
I have no idea if they had probable cause. How would I find dharamsala10/13/17
If I remember crim pro from law school, if you aren't free t notreallyalawyer10/13/17
You guys are engaged in an academic discussion that has no r pauperesq10/13/17

dharamsala (Oct 12, 2017 - 2:00 pm)

I'm a bar applicant with a criminal record (no arrest though) and I requested documentation from the appropriate police department. They refused to submit the records to me. Do I have any recourse? I disclosed what happened fully on the bar application, but they also require submission of documentation.

Has anyone faced this hurdle before? I just don't want my admission held up.

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trickydick (Oct 12, 2017 - 3:16 pm)

Have you taken the bar exam in your state yet? I’ve actually dealt with this exact same issue before.

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lawyer2 (Oct 12, 2017 - 3:31 pm)

All you need is there refusal in writing to submit. Unfortunately, I had a few matters to disclose and some agencies had the records and some did not. Those who didn't, I simply printed and included the email/letter from the agency.

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dharamsala (Oct 12, 2017 - 3:51 pm)

trickydick-no but I applied for the February 2018 bar exam. Hopefully the Committee on Character would understand that I made diligent efforts, but that the authorities are not cooperating, which is no fault on my own.

For the record, I have no arrests however the question on the bar app is broad enough to encompass simply being subject to criminal investigation.

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pauperesq (Oct 12, 2017 - 4:03 pm)

Don't say on your application that the police "are not cooperating." Depending on the jurisdiction, the police may not have a legal obligation to hand over an incident report, even to the subject of the incident.

Simply narrate the incident in your own words, state that you requested a copy of the incident report, and the police did not provide you one. Attach the response letter. End of story.

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downwardslope (Oct 12, 2017 - 4:05 pm)

I did c&f Work for a state agency before. If someone submitted something from the relevant agency stating they no longer had the records or had nothing responsive, we were fine with it. In many cases we could get it ourselves anyway.

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dharamsala (Oct 12, 2017 - 4:15 pm)

I just narrated the incident fully and mentioned at the end that I requested the record and the PD never responded.

Then I uploaded the police report request form to prove that I made a diligent effort.

I'm just worried that the COC would think that I'm intentionally hiding something, which is not the case at all.

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maxwell (Oct 12, 2017 - 5:54 pm)

“and the PD never responded.”

I think the bar would probably want some sort of response from the PD stating why they didn’t give it to you.

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3lol (Oct 12, 2017 - 4:24 pm)

So were you charged with a crime? Convicted? Pled guilty?

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dharamsala (Oct 12, 2017 - 4:31 pm)

I was never arrested , charged, convicted, or sentenced of any crime. But the wording on the application is very broad. So in the interest of candor I disclosed.

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notreallyalawyer (Oct 12, 2017 - 5:48 pm)

What else could it be? I know of in the UK they have something called a "caution" but I think you have to be facing some kind of charges.

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dharamsala (Oct 12, 2017 - 7:47 pm)

I was never arrested, but I was issued a trespass warning, which is still in effect. In addition, II know for a fact that I'm a named suspect in multiple police reports because I called the police department and the detective searched through the system and told me that I was in "numerous" reports.

The NJ bar application question regarding criminal infractions is very broad. Even if you were subject to an investigation, you have to disclose.

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notreallyalawyer (Oct 12, 2017 - 8:04 pm)

Kind of odd as CA and NY accept undocumented aliens as members of the bar. Does NJ do that too? And if so do they have to put it down?

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jd4hire (Oct 12, 2017 - 4:40 pm)

Dealt with this issue as well. I did what you did - narrate to the best of my ability and documents all steps I took in an effort to obtain the records. Unfortunately, mine was for arrests and I couldn't come up with docs from a few of the arresting agencies...others had them and gladly passed them around.

Good luck.

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dharamsala (Oct 12, 2017 - 4:44 pm)

Is there any point in hiring a C&F attorney at this early stage? Or should I hire only if I get a hearing? I disclosed everything candidly.

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downwardslope (Oct 12, 2017 - 4:54 pm)

No. They want to know if you disclosed it. If you did, you are fine. They care if you were not truthful. This is always huge. “I didn’t know X counted” is a standard excuse even though the instructions are always super clear to disclose. I did screening work on par with bar c&f where it was of the “when in doubt, disclose” variety.

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pauperesq (Oct 12, 2017 - 5:01 pm)

There isn't even a problem yet. Why waste money on an attorney that will have absolutely nothing to do?

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trickydick (Oct 12, 2017 - 5:21 pm)

Lawyer2 is right. I was arrested and the state bar wanted a copy of the arrest report. The police department had a policy against releasing those reports for some reason so I sent the state bar an official letter from the police agency denying my request and explaining why.

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sergey (Oct 12, 2017 - 5:40 pm)

Why didn't you take the bar earlier? Did you fail a class and had to go summer school or something?

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notreallyalawyer (Oct 12, 2017 - 5:50 pm)

Joe Biden became a member of the bar with law school plagiarism on his record. I have absolutely no criminal history/record of any time, and can't get a job to save my life..

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dharamsala (Oct 12, 2017 - 11:08 pm)

When did you graduate?

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notreallyalawyer (Oct 13, 2017 - 8:34 am)

2002.

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dharamsala (Oct 13, 2017 - 10:44 am)

How have you been paying the bills since then?

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notreallyalawyer (Oct 13, 2017 - 11:15 am)

doc review

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thirdtierlaw (Oct 12, 2017 - 7:41 pm)

I had gotten a ticket for running a redlight in this random backwoods place. The police station had zero record of the violation, having received the check I wrote to pay the ticket, a receipt from cashing the check, or even a DMV record.

I just disclosed the violation and circumstances, explained that nobody can find any record of even a stop occurring, that I pled 'no contest', sent them a check, and never heard from them again.

The C&F people didn't seem to care. The big thing is disclosing. If you disclose something that they can't find any record of, they'll assume you're being honest. It is the people that don't disclose because they believe if they can't get it, than nobody will ever find it. They are the ones to get dinged.

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guyingorillasuit (Oct 13, 2017 - 12:07 am)

I've never done this in NJ, but here's a link: http://www.njsp.org/criminal-history-records/

I thought you were from PA - there's a similar procedure there.

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dharamsala (Oct 13, 2017 - 12:09 am)

The criminal activity happened in MA.

I have no criminal history in ether PA or NJ.

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jd4hire (Oct 13, 2017 - 9:16 am)

CORI check might net it. https://www.mass.gov/criminal-record-check-services

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dharamsala (Oct 13, 2017 - 10:40 am)

Nothing shows up because I was never arrested or fingerprinted.

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fettywap (Oct 13, 2017 - 10:46 am)

What makes you think you have a criminal record if you were never arrested or charged with anything? A warning shouldn't count. Just explain that this was only a warning and misstated on your application.

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dharamsala (Oct 13, 2017 - 11:00 am)

Yes, I clarified on my application that I was never arrested, charged, convicted, or sentenced of a crime. The police approached me, took me to a room, interrogated me, had me write out a statement, and then issued the trespass warning, and escorted me off the premises. I did not feel free to leave or tell them to go away. So, I disclosed in the interest of full honest and candor.

This is the exact wording-as you can see, it's quite broad:

Have you EVER been cited for, charged with, taken into custody for, arrested for, indicted, tried for, pled guilty to, or convicted of, the violation of any law (other than a minor traffic violation) or been the subject of a juvenile delinquent or youthful offender proceeding or received a conditional discharge, adjournment in contemplation of dismissal, or pretrial diversionary program? (NOTE: driving while intoxicated or impaired, driving without insurance, reckless driving, leaving the scene of an accident, and driving while suspended are not considered minor traffic offenses for the purposes of this section).

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notreallyalawyer (Oct 13, 2017 - 11:17 am)

If you weren't free to leave then you were under arrest. Then it's a question if they had probable cause, and if they didn't, then you mention that on the form.

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dharamsala (Oct 13, 2017 - 11:29 am)

I have no idea if they had probable cause. How would I find that out?

I was never put in handcuffs, fingerprinted, or photographed, but I definitely did not feel free to terminate the encounter. That's why I disclosed.

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notreallyalawyer (Oct 13, 2017 - 11:34 am)

If I remember crim pro from law school, if you aren't free to leave, you are under arrest. They need probable cause to do that. I have no idea how you prove or disprove whether they had probable cause.

I was once, upon returning from Canada, detained for about an hour in a room. They had absolutely zero cause, but you have zero due process rights on the border. They just didn't like that i had a rental car, they went through it, searched me, and said "we think you are up to no good, but can't prove it, so we're letting you go". I wouldn't mention that as they had no cause other than the fact they didn't like the way I looked. That surely added to my anxiety issue, I get very nervous going through customs, or with any people in positions of power over me, especially if they are armed.

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pauperesq (Oct 13, 2017 - 1:36 pm)

You guys are engaged in an academic discussion that has no relevance to the situation. This is a C&F application, not a suppression hearing.

Whether opal was technically arrested or not, the point is she had an encounter with the police that generated an incident report. Her name is on a piece of paper in a filing cabinet and, out of an abundance of caution, she is disclosing the encounter, which she should.

All that needs to be said to the board is you had this encounter, they took your statement, a warning was issued, and no charges were filed. If it was a written warning, include a copy. If it was verbal, say so.

Conclude by saying you requested a copy of the incident report and the department declined to provide you with one. Attach the denial letter.

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