A Criminal Conviction Isn’t The End Of The Road
Being convicted of a crime can seem like a devastating blow after you and your attorney have collaborated on a strong defense. However, a criminal conviction does not need to be the end of the story. With a skilled and determined defense lawyer from KesslerWilliams on your side, you can explore ways to pursue post-conviction relief, such as:
- An appeal through the Missouri Court of Appeals, the Illinois Appellate Court or a higher court in either state
- A petition or request for expungement (clearing your public record of an arrest and/or conviction)
A frank discussion with one of our experienced, aggressive criminal defense attorneys can be a promising first step on your path to a hopeful, fresh start. Our lawyers are honest and direct about appropriate legal actions after a criminal conviction.
Rationale For An Appeal
In most cases, your appellate attorney will need to help you file a notice of appeal with the trial court within 10 days after a judgment against you. Your appeal may be based on one or more of the following:
- New evidence was discovered.
- Proof has come to light that evidence was withheld during the criminal trial.
- Your defense counsel was ineffective.
- The sentence, including the term of imprisonment imposed, is excessive in relation to the offense.
- There is evidence of jury misconduct
At KesslerWilliams, we welcome inquiries from people who have been convicted of crimes as well as from fellow attorneys. We are well qualified to evaluate a case in search of reasons to appeal, file an appeal or play any supporting role in the development of an appeal.
Elements Of An Expungement Petition
In Missouri, you may file a petition for the expungement of an arrest record if you:
- Have no prior misdemeanor or felony conviction
- Believe it was an unjustified or false arrest, and no criminal charges will be filed as a result of the arrest
If you are convicted of a crime – even if you made a guilty plea before your conviction – you may file for the expungement of your criminal record three years after a felony conviction or one year after a misdemeanor conviction. For personalized legal advice about extraordinary circumstances pertaining to your opportunities in Missouri or Illinois, consult with one of our attorneys at KesslerWilliams.
What Types Of Convictions Can Be Appealed Or Expunged?
It’s possible to appeal a criminal conviction if there was a legal error in a person’s trial that affected the fairness of its outcome. Some examples of mistakes that would warrant a criminal appeal include the following:
- Improper jury selection
- The jury received incorrect instructions
- Insufficient evidence provided by the state
- The court allowed evidence they shouldn’t have or did not allow crucial evidence
- The prosecutor said something they weren’t allowed to in their closing argument
People in Missouri can expunge arrest or conviction records associated with misdemeanor and felony offenses from their criminal records. Many types of offenses are eligible for expungement, but some are not, including:
- Class A felony offenses for violent crimes or otherwise dangerous felonies
- Sex crimes where the defendant needs to register as a sex offender
- Domestic violence offenses
- Drunk driving offenses
A person may only expunge one felony and two misdemeanors in their lifetime.
Can I Own A Firearm Once A Felony Has Been Expunged?
When someone gets convicted of a felony in Missouri, they receive a lifetime ban from owning a firearm. However, some people may be able to restore their gun rights after successfully expunging their state-level felony charges. Those convicted of federal felony charges cannot get their gun rights back after expungement.
How Long Does An Expungement Take?
The expungement process can take at least 30 days up to six months to complete depending on the circumstances of each case. The longer ago the conviction was, the longer it takes to gather the records necessary to begin the process.
For Help With An Expungement Petition Or A Criminal Appeal
Get your post-conviction strategy underway. Reach out to us at our St. Louis law office.