The short answer is no, like nearly every other criminal conviction in a Colorado state court. The only way not to have a driving under the influence (DUI) conviction on your public record is not to be convicted or plead guilty to DUI. If having a DUI on your record is a significant concern, you must defend yourself aggressively. Depending on the facts and applicable law, your charges may be lowered, they may be dismissed, or a jury might not find you guilty.
Churchill DUI Defense has helped clients facing DUI charges for more than 24 years. Contact us as soon as possible if you’re arrested. We are always here to assist. Call us today at (303) 832-9000 or complete our online contact form to schedule a free consultation.
What Does it Mean to Expunge a Criminal Record? Is Sealing One the Same Thing?
Expungement means records of your arrest, conviction, and sentencing are physically destroyed, so it appears that it never happened. If a record is expunged, you can legally say you’ve never been arrested or convicted of a DUI. This includes when someone asks you during the job application process or when you go through a background check.
Expungement of criminal records in Colorado is limited to juvenile offenses such as underage drinking and driving (UDD) and if your case involves a conviction due to mistaken identity. If you have a UDD on your record, we can file a petition to expunge your record when you turn 21.
Sealing a criminal record doesn’t mean destroying it. Sealing means that even though you’re acquitted of DUI, your arrest stays on your record, but only law enforcement and other governmental officials can see it. It won’t show up on a background check, and there is no arrest as far as the public is concerned.
Does it Make a Difference If I Plead Guilty to DUI?
You may plead guilty to a DUI charge with or without a plea bargain agreement. Most criminal cases are resolved that way. It’s an agreement between the defendant and the prosecution that the judge must approve. It usually involves pleading guilty to the original charge or a lesser one so both sides can avoid going to trial, and the defendant gets a known sentence they can live with.
Whether you’re found guilty by a jury, or you admit guilt, your criminal record cannot be expunged. There are many potential benefits to a plea bargain agreement, including avoiding the stress, expense, effort, and time a trial will take. But you’ll still have a DUI on your record. If preventing that from happening is your priority, a plea bargain may not be a good choice to resolve the case.
How Do I Get My DUI Arrest Record Sealed?
Records of a DUI arrest without a later conviction may be sealed. Colorado law allows for sealing a record of a DUI arrest without a conviction. How and when it will be sealed depends on when you were arrested, if DUI charges were filed, and how your case was resolved.
If you were arrested after January 1, 2022, but prosecutors didn’t charge you with DUI within the next year, the Colorado Bureau of Investigation must seal your record. If you were arrested but not convicted, you could ask a judge to seal the arrest record if prosecutors asked to dismiss your case, a judge or jury acquitted you of the charges, or you completed a deferred judgment and sentence (which may be a good option if you qualify, avoiding a trial is a priority, and you want no DUI conviction or arrest on your record).
Don’t Go It Alone
If you need advice about sealing the record of your DUI, DUAI, or DUID charge in the Denver metro area or anywhere in the Front Range, contact Denver DUI attorney Kevin Churchill at (303) 832-9000 for a free consultation. You can discuss the details of your situation, how Colorado law may apply, and your best options going forward.