Who is the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition?

Our mission is to reverse the trend of mass incarceration in Colorado. We are a coalition of nearly 7,000 individual members and over 100 faith and community organizations who have united to stop perpetual prison expansion in Colorado through policy and sentence reform.

Our chief areas of interest include drug policy reform, women in prison, racial injustice, the impact of incarceration on children and families, the problems associated with re-entry and stopping the practice of using private prisons in our state.

If you would like to be involved please go to our website and become a member.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Record Sealing Bill HB 1107

HB 1107 (The Record Sealing Bill)
Call or Email Senate Appropriations Committee Members
Hearing before the Senate Appropriations Committee -- Monday April 30
7:30 A..M. Senate Committee Room 356

The Record Sealing Bill (HB-1107) strongly passed out of the
House on a 46-18-1 vote and passed through the Senate Judiciary Committee unanimously.
Your calls and emails make a huge difference.

Here's what you can do to help:

Please contact the members of the Senate Appropriations Committee (the list is at the end
of this email) and urge their support of HB 1107.
Pass this email to as many friends and colleagues as possible.
It is time for the final push on this bill to get through the Senate! Let’s keep the powerful momentum going.

WHAT THE BILL DOES -- Colorado law does not allow a person with a criminal conviction
to seal their record – regardless of the nature of the criminal conviction, the length of time since the
conviction, or evidence of rehabilitation. Even after people have completed their sentence
and been law abiding for years or even decades, they are forever stigmatized by having a criminal record.
Even minor offenses, committed many years ago, can prevent someone from
obtaining housing and meaningful employment or advancement in their career field.

The possibility of being able to seal a criminal record is a strong and real incentive for a person to turn his/her life around.

A recent study found that, after six or seven years from an arrest, the likelihood of offending
for young men with criminal records looks quite similar to those with no criminal history.
For employers concerned about hiring people with criminal records, a criminal record offers
vanishingly little relevant information once a critical period of time has passed. Therefore, overtime,
a criminal history is both less relevant and less accurate in predicting future criminal activity.
However, the stigma and bias remains. Scarlet Letters and Recidivism: Does An Old Criminal Record
Predict Future Offending?,Kurlycheck, Brame and Bushway, Criminology and Public Policy, Vol 5, No 3 (August 2006)

HB 1107 would allow people convicted of select crimes to petition the Court
to seal a criminal record after they completed their sentence and been offense free for 10 years.
· Convictions for some crimes would not be eligible to be sealed including:
Class 1 or 2 misdemeanor traffic offenses or class A or B traffic infractions, DUI/DWAI,
sexual offenses, domestic violence, offense involving a pregnant women or convictions
for crimes involve aggravating circumstances, high risk, or special offender sentencing enhancements.

· The Court does not have to order the sealing. The Court is required to balance
the privacy rights of the petitioner against the public’s right to know on a case by case basis.

· For offenses committed before July 1, 2007, the District Attorney will have
to agree before the Court can order the record sealed.

· Law enforcement will always have access to any sealed record.

· The petitioner must have paid all of the fines, fees, costs and
restitution ordered in the criminal case. The petitioner will also
pay a filing fee that is sufficient to cover the cost of the proceeding.

HB 1107 has many checks and balances in it that strike a
good balance between the public’s (and employers) right to know and a person’s right to privacy.

Senator Abel Tapia - Committee Chair
Democrat - Pueblo
Phone 303-866-2581

Senator Moe Keller - Committee Vice-Chair
Democrat - Jefferson County
Phone 303-866-4856

Senator Greg Brophy
Republican - Cheyenne, Elbert, Kiowa, Kit Carson, Lincoln, Logan, Morgan,
Phillips, Prowers, Sedgwick, Washington, Yuma
Phone 303-866-6360

Senator Peter Groff
Democrat - Adams, Denver
Phone 303-866-4864

Senator Ted Harvey
Republican - Douglas
Phone 303-866-4881

Senator Steve Johnson
Republican - Larimer

Senator Mike Kopp
Republican - Jefferson
Phone 303-866-4859

Senator Stephanie Takis
Democrat - Adams
Phone 303-866-4855

Senator Jennifer Veiga
Democrat - Adams, Denver
Phone 303-866-4861

Senator Sue Windels
Democrat - Jefferson
Phone 303-866-4840

We need your help, your voice makes all the difference

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hier een berichtje uit Nederland. Onlangs heb ik het programma op de televisie gezien. Het is verschrikkelijk wat deze jonge mannen hebben gedaan maar het is nog verschrikkelijker om te bedenken dat ze de rest van hun leven moeten doorbregen zonder uitzicht op een menswaardig bestaan.
De familie van de slachtoffers moeten hun geliefde missen en dit moet afschuwelijk zijn. Maar waarom blijven haten. Haat lost niets op.
Ik hoop dat ze de kracht vinden om deze jonge mannen vergiffenis te geven.