Question About An Old Arrest And Eligibility: Update

To keep abreast of site changes, or to post a question, idea or suggestion for the website.

Moderators: carlson1, Keith B, Charles L. Cotton

User avatar

Topic author
Kadelic
Senior Member
Posts in topic: 6
Posts: 208
Joined: Fri Feb 17, 2012 1:42 pm
Location: Duncanville, TX

Question About An Old Arrest And Eligibility: Update

#1

Post by Kadelic » Sun Feb 26, 2012 9:17 am

Back in 1987, at the age of 18, and in the state of California, I got pulled over for cutting through a restaurant parking lot and my vehicle was searched. I was arrested for felony possession of a controlled substance, was photographed and printed, and spent the night in jail. I was bailed out the next morning and was given an arraignment date. I showed up at court on that day and couldn't find my name on the docket. I was then instructed by a clerk to inquire at the DA's office. After waiting at the DA's office for a while I was told that they had absolutely nothing on file for me and that I should contact my bail bondsman. My bail bondsman told me, and I quote: "Just go home and pretend nothing ever happened." I specifically asked if the arrest would show up on my record and he specifically stated that if I was ever asked if I had been arrested that I could say no. For what it's worth, and without going into detail, the circumstances of the search and arrest were not legal, and the subject of being intoxicated or not, or why I was searched in the first place, was never brought up by the arresting officer. Anyway, in 1991 I moved back to Texas (I'm a Native Son) and had all but forgotten about the incident until I recently applied for a CHL. Other than two speeding tickets over the years I've never had any other run-ins with the law.

I've already filled out my online application, been digitally fingerprinted, and passed the CHL class. I also legally purchased the firearm I intend to carry within the past month. Sometime this week I'm going to get my passport photos and then plan drop everything in the mail. On the online application I answered "NO" to the question of ever having been arrested or charged with a crime. At the time I did so with confidence since I was specifically told I could do so by my "legal counsel" at the time, the bail bondsman. I never retained an attorney as I couldn't afford one (not to mention I was innocent) and planned on going the public defender route. Anyway, now that I'm about to mail in all my CHL material I can't help but wonder if that arrest will in fact show up, and if it does, what it could mean to my eligibility. I honestly believe I acted in good faith, considering what I was told, but how will the state of Texas see it? Should (and could I) go back and re-answer that question on the application? I did consider answering yes, but then if it truly doesn't show up then that could cause further investigation or complication. Any advice on this matter is greatly appreciated!
Last edited by Kadelic on Thu Mar 29, 2012 11:02 am, edited 1 time in total.
Honor Necessity

User avatar

Teamless
Senior Member
Posts in topic: 2
Posts: 3203
Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2010 9:51 pm
Location: Houston, Texas

Re: Question About An Old Arrest And Eligibility

#2

Post by Teamless » Sun Feb 26, 2012 9:28 am

As the question was "were you ever arrested" the answer should have been yes.
However since you have already done the application, not much you can change at this point.

however, since you were not convicted of a crime, let alone stood trial, you should not be prevented (due to this issue) from getting your CHL, unless the TXDPS decides you intentionally lied on the application, then I suppose they could deny you.

it would not be a bad idea, to contact the county clerk or DA's office where the offense originally occurred, and have them send you a letter stating there is no arrest record for you, or if there is an arrest record, what the outcome was on the case.

Thus if (potentially WHEN) TXDPS asks, you have the answer ready to send to them (and they will want a copy of the record from the court or DA.
League City, TX
Yankee born, but got to Texas as fast as I could! NRA / PSC / IANAL

User avatar

Oldgringo
Senior Member
Posts in topic: 3
Posts: 11114
Joined: Sat Mar 08, 2008 10:15 pm
Location: Pineywoods of east Texas

Re: Question About An Old Arrest And Eligibility

#3

Post by Oldgringo » Sun Feb 26, 2012 12:25 pm

Teamless wrote:As the question was "were you ever arrested" the answer should have been yes.
However since you have already done the application, not much you can change at this point.

however, since you were not convicted of a crime, let alone stood trial, you should not be prevented (due to this issue) from getting your CHL, unless the TXDPS decides you intentionally lied on the application, then I suppose they could deny you.

it would not be a bad idea, to contact the county clerk or DA's office where the offense originally occurred, and have them send you a letter stating there is no arrest record for you, or if there is an arrest record, what the outcome was on the case.

Thus if (potentially WHEN) TXDPS asks, you have the answer ready to send to them (and they will want a copy of the record from the court or DA.
OTOH, this may be a 15 year old sleeping dog better left lie?


koolaid
Senior Member
Posts in topic: 1
Posts: 292
Joined: Thu Jul 16, 2009 12:24 pm

Re: Question About An Old Arrest And Eligibility

#4

Post by koolaid » Sun Feb 26, 2012 2:59 pm

I had a similar issue. I was arrested years and years ago and the case just vanished. Never went to court. Never heard anything else about it.

I contacted the lawyer I used back then and he no longer had any records.

I had him get a certified copy of a records search from the court that said no record existed, listed the arrest on my chl application, and attached the certified records search and didn't have any issues getting my license.

If you weren't convicted of anything, you are not disqualified, but if they find out you left off information it might be an issue.
01/02/2010 - Plastic


sumyungai
Junior Member
Posts in topic: 1
Posts: 28
Joined: Fri Feb 24, 2012 1:50 am

Re: Question About An Old Arrest And Eligibility

#5

Post by sumyungai » Sun Feb 26, 2012 8:07 pm

Oldgringo wrote:OTOH, this may be a 15 year old sleeping dog better left lie?
That works fine as long as DPS never finds out about it. The problem happens if DPS somehow find the arrest during their background check. It looks like it could be an automatic disqualification for not disclosing a material fact.

User avatar

MoJo
Senior Member
Posts in topic: 1
Posts: 4899
Joined: Thu Dec 23, 2004 6:10 pm
Location: Vidor, Tx
Contact:

Re: Question About An Old Arrest And Eligibility

#6

Post by MoJo » Sun Feb 26, 2012 8:48 pm

sumyungai wrote:
Oldgringo wrote:OTOH, this may be a 15 year old sleeping dog better left lie?
That works fine as long as DPS never finds out about it. The problem happens if DPS somehow find the arrest during their background check. It looks like it could be an automatic disqualification for not disclosing a material fact.
So true, those sleeping dogs have a bad habit of biting. Falsifying a government document is a crime. You knew you had been arrested and didn't say anything that's intentionally leaving off information. Contact DPS and get it right.
"To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them."
George Mason
Texas and Louisiana CHL Instructor, NRA Pistol, Rifle, Shotgun, Personal Protection and Refuse To Be A Victim Instructor

User avatar

Oldgringo
Senior Member
Posts in topic: 3
Posts: 11114
Joined: Sat Mar 08, 2008 10:15 pm
Location: Pineywoods of east Texas

Re: Question About An Old Arrest And Eligibility

#7

Post by Oldgringo » Sun Feb 26, 2012 11:51 pm

Y'all may be right; honesty is the best policy.

We'll be interested in how this plays out.

User avatar

Topic author
Kadelic
Senior Member
Posts in topic: 6
Posts: 208
Joined: Fri Feb 17, 2012 1:42 pm
Location: Duncanville, TX

Re: Question About An Old Arrest And Eligibility

#8

Post by Kadelic » Mon Feb 27, 2012 1:08 am

Well, after literally losing sleep over this tonight I'm going to call DPS in the morning and tell them about it. Hopefully they will still let me go through with the application process. I'll keep y'all posted on the outcome. Thanks for the feedback.
Honor Necessity


speedsix
Senior Member
Posts in topic: 5
Posts: 5608
Joined: Tue Jan 18, 2011 8:39 am

Re: Question About An Old Arrest And Eligibility

#9

Post by speedsix » Mon Feb 27, 2012 7:28 am

...I'd tell them that, while you were arrested and booked, the prosecutor reviewed the case and found it wasn't a good arrest and chose not to act on it...and that it was dismissed...where and when...and let it go at that...without all the juicy details that might predispose them to a negative decision...that's what they'll find if they can find that after all these years...and you've been honest...let the paperwork speak for itself...it'll probably just say "dismissed"...

User avatar

Keith B
Moderator
Posts in topic: 4
Posts: 18301
Joined: Sat Aug 18, 2007 3:29 pm

Re: Question About An Old Arrest And Eligibility

#10

Post by Keith B » Mon Feb 27, 2012 7:49 am

DPS will more than likely require you to provide an affidavit from the DA or County Clerk where you had the incident stating that there is no record of the arrest or that no charges were filed.
Keith
Texas LTC Instructor, Missouri CCW Instructor, NRA Certified Pistol, Rifle, Shotgun Instructor and RSO, NRA Life Member

Psalm 82:3-4

User avatar

Topic author
Kadelic
Senior Member
Posts in topic: 6
Posts: 208
Joined: Fri Feb 17, 2012 1:42 pm
Location: Duncanville, TX

Re: Question About An Old Arrest And Eligibility

#11

Post by Kadelic » Mon Feb 27, 2012 8:51 am

Keith B wrote:DPS will more than likely require you to provide an affidavit from the DA or County Clerk where you had the incident stating that there is no record of the arrest or that no charges were filed.
But wouldn't it show up (or not show up) when they do their background check? How would I go about getting an affidavit? Could I call the DA's office myself or would I need to hire a lawyer to do so? I guess I'll find out on my own soon enough. I know for a fact that the DA had no record of the arrest and that no files were charged because they told me so when I showed up for my court date that never existed as far as they were concerned. One way or another I'll be getting some education on the matter today.
Honor Necessity

User avatar

Teamless
Senior Member
Posts in topic: 2
Posts: 3203
Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2010 9:51 pm
Location: Houston, Texas

Re: Question About An Old Arrest And Eligibility

#12

Post by Teamless » Mon Feb 27, 2012 8:53 am

Kadelic wrote: How would I go about getting an affidavit?
Call the county clerk or DA's office in the area where this originally happened.
Kadelic wrote:I know for a fact that the DA had no record of the arrest and that no files were charged
An affidavit saying that you have no history is what you want and would be ideal!
League City, TX
Yankee born, but got to Texas as fast as I could! NRA / PSC / IANAL

User avatar

Keith B
Moderator
Posts in topic: 4
Posts: 18301
Joined: Sat Aug 18, 2007 3:29 pm

Re: Question About An Old Arrest And Eligibility

#13

Post by Keith B » Mon Feb 27, 2012 9:41 am

:iagree: Teamless beat me to the response. :thumbs2:
Keith
Texas LTC Instructor, Missouri CCW Instructor, NRA Certified Pistol, Rifle, Shotgun Instructor and RSO, NRA Life Member

Psalm 82:3-4

User avatar

WildBill
Senior Member
Posts in topic: 2
Posts: 17167
Joined: Tue Jul 03, 2007 12:53 pm
Location: Houston

Re: Question About An Old Arrest And Eligibility

#14

Post by WildBill » Mon Feb 27, 2012 9:59 am

IMO, the county court clerk is the place to get records, not the DAs office. Court records kept by the clerk are the official records. The DAs records are not.

This is from the LA County DAs office website:

Can I get a rejection letter from you for a crime that was never prosecuted?
The Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office does not write or provide "rejection" letters to individuals who were arrested, but allegedly never charged with a crime. You should direct your request to the law enforcement agency that arrested you. You can also contact the Los Angeles Superior Court for any records they might have relating to the ultimate dismissal of the case online at http://www.lasuperiorcourt.org" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;.
NRA Endowment Member

User avatar

Topic author
Kadelic
Senior Member
Posts in topic: 6
Posts: 208
Joined: Fri Feb 17, 2012 1:42 pm
Location: Duncanville, TX

Re: Question About An Old Arrest And Eligibility

#15

Post by Kadelic » Mon Feb 27, 2012 11:20 am

Thanks again for the comments and advice. I've spoken to a gentleman with the DPS CHL department and explained my situation: That I already answered "no" on my online application, why I answered "no," and that in fact I actually had been arrested. Worst case scenario, If I were to submit my checklist and other material with my application stating I have never been arrested, and a record of that arrest came up, they ( the DPS) would just send me a letter requesting a certified record search from the relevant county clerks office that included the final disposition or that no record existed. I would not be disqualified or face any other form of punishment. He even suggested that, after speaking to the county clerk and they confirm that they have no record, that I not even bother sending any information regarding the arrest to them. For something that long ago with no disposition, or even an arraignment, the only thing that would raise a flag to them would be a conviction.
Honor Necessity

Post Reply

Return to “Site Announcements, Questions & Suggestions”