Appeal from the 51st District Court Tom Green County, Texas
Trial Court Cause No. A150480C
consists of Justices Christopher, Hassan, and Poissant.
MARGARET "MEG" POISSANT, JUSTICE
appeal is brought by the Texas Department of Public Safety
(the "Department") complaining of the trial
court's order granting S.A.M.'s ("Sam")
petition for expunction. We reverse and render in part and
affirm in part.
and Procedural Background
filed a petition to expunge two arrests pursuant to Chapter
55 of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure. According to
Sam's petition, the first arrest occurred on August 29,
1987, for the offense of criminal mischief, a Class A
misdemeanor. Sam alleged it was dismissed on April 12, 1988.
The second arrest took place on February 12, 1988, for
indecent exposure, a misdemeanor. Regarding that arrest, Sam
stated he "believes charge was dismissed by the County
Attorney of Tom Green County, Texas." Sam stated that he
was entitled to expunction of both arrests on the grounds:
1.Petitioner has been released from custody on these charges
and the charges have not resulted in a final conviction.
Further, Petitioner is not under the supervision of any court
pursuant to Article 42.12, Code of Criminal Procedure.
2. Petitioner has not been convicted of a felony in the five
(5) years preceding the date of the arrest.
Department filed an answer on February 5, 2016, arguing Sam
was not entitled to expunction for either arrest.
trial court conducted a hearing on November 20, 2017. Sam
testified that he was arrested on August 29, 1987, for the
Class A misdemeanor of criminal mischief and that charge was
dismissed in April of 1988. Further, Sam testified that he
was arrested on February 12, 1988, for indecent exposure, a
misdemeanor. According to Sam:
• he never went to court on that case;
• he did not plead guilty to that offense;
• it was his belief that it was dismissed by the County
Attorney of Tom Green County;
• the Tom Green County Attorney had "signed off on
a proposed order of ...