Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Ex parte Vela

Court of Appeals of Texas, Fourth District, San Antonio

April 3, 2019

EX PARTE Oseas VELA

          From the 79th Judicial District Court, Jim Wells County, Texas Trial Court No. 17-12-57894-CV Honorable Richard C. Terrell, Judge Presiding

          Sitting: Sandee Bryan Marion, Chief Justice, Patricia O. Alvarez, Justice, Liza A. Rodriguez, Justice

          MEMORANDUM OPINION

          Patricia O. Alvarez, Justice

         Appellant Texas Department of Public Safety appeals the trial court's order granting an expunction of all records and files related to Appellee Oseas Vela's arrest for burglary of a building. Because the evidence is insufficient to prove the statutory requirements of Texas Code of Criminal Procedure article 55.01, we reverse the trial court's order granting the petition for expunction.

         Factual and Procedural Background

         Vela was arrested and subsequently charged by indictment for burglary of a building on March 14, 1994. On October 5, 1995, pursuant to a plea agreement, Vela entered a plea of guilty to the lesser included offense of criminal trespass and the trial court sentenced Vela to two-years' deferred adjudication probation.

         A. Vela's Petition for Expunction and Department's Answer

         On December 11, 2017, pursuant to article 55.01(a)(2) of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure, Vela filed a petition for expunction seeking to expunge the records and files related to the March 14, 1994 burglary of a building arrest. See Tex. Code Crim. Proc. Ann. art. 55.01(a)(2). The petition alleged Vela was entitled to an expunction:

1. Petitioner was released and the charge, if any, ha[d] not resulted in a final conviction and [was] no longer pending, and there was no court-ordered community supervision under Article 42.12 of the Code of Criminal Procedure for [the offense] . . ., and
2. Any indictment or information charging Petitioner with the commission of this [offense] has been dismissed or amended to exclude this offense, and the applicable waiting period has expired, however, the attorney representing the State has certified that the offense and/or arrest records are not needed for any criminal investigation or prosecution, including the prosecution of another person.

         Attached to the petition was a certificate of the Jim Wells County District Attorney asserting as follows:

After conducting a review of the records [pertaining to the charges against Oseas Vela for Burglary of a Building on or about March 14, 1994], I certified that the offense and/or arrest records are not needed for use in any criminal investigation or prosecution, including the prosecution of another person.

         On January 26, 2018, the Texas Department of Public Safety filed an original answer and general denial asserting that, because Vela was convicted, and served community supervision as a result of the arrest, Vela was barred from expunging records and files of the arrest from March 14, 1994. More specifically, the Department argued Vela was not entitled to an expunction under article 55.01 because (1) the charges stem from the same arrest as the criminal trespass for which he served deferred adjudication probation, and (2) the charges were only dismissed because Vela entered a guilty plea to the criminal trespass.

         B. Hearing before the Trial Court

         The case was called for hearing on February 12, 2018. The Department was served with notice but did not appear for the hearing.

         At the outset, trial counsel explained Vela was actually moving for expunction "under [sub]section (b) of 55.01 and-and the order I have prepared was under [sub]section (a)." Trial counsel conceded that because Vela was originally arrested for burglary of a building, but received deferred adjudication probation for the lesser-included charge of criminal trespass, he "probably would have been prohibited from getting the-the expunction [under subsection (a)] on the original or ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.