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Pardons in Delaware

On Behalf of | Dec 16, 2014 | Criminal

In a previous blog post, /blog/2014/09/how-to-remove-criminal-charges-on-your-record.shtml,  we discussed Expungements in the State of Delaware as a means to keep your criminal record clean. Expungements in Delaware only available for individuals who had a positive outcome for their case such as a dismissal, successfully completed probation before judgment, or an acquittal. Expungements are not available for individuals who were found guilty or plead guilty to a charge.

When someone pleads guilty to a charge in Delaware, that charge becomes part of their permanent record. After exhausting all appeal rights, the only avenue to remove the conviction is through the pardon process. The Constitution of Delaware vests the power in the Governor to pardon individuals of crimes they have committed or to commute sentences. Accordingly, the Board of Pardons was created. The board hears pardon applications and presents a recommendation to the Governor as to whether or not they feel the individual’s crime should be pardoned.

While the Governor has final discretion, the decision of the board is weighed heavily. When determining whether or not to recommend a pardon, the board looks at factors such as the nature of the crime, how long ago it occurred, subsequent police involvement, the reason a pardon is being sought, and the extent to which the individual is rehabilitated. For many, Pardons are their last and only hope to remove a conviction from their record.

To determine your eligibility for a pardon it is important to consult a Delaware Criminal Defense Lawyer. At Tunnell & Raysor, P.A., Jon Horner has experience in handling pardons. He will evaluate your case and zealously advocate on your behalf.