Most of the time, it’s not possible to expunge – that is, erase or seal -- an accurate arrest or charge on an New Mexico criminal record, even if you have completed probation. New Mexico allows adult criminal records to be expunged only in the very limited circumstances described below.
If You Were Not Convicted of a Crime
Your criminal record may be expunged if you were arrested for a misdemeanor or petty misdemeanor offense and no record of disposition can be found. If a record of final disposition exists -- including dismissal, a decision not to file charges, or a referral to a preprosecution diversion program -- the record is not eligible for expungement. In addition, arrest records for crimes of “moral turpitude” cannot be expunged. (New Mexico Statutes § 29-3-8.1.)
If You Were Convicted of a Crime
With the exception of some DNA records, it is not possible to expunge criminal conviction information in New Mexico. Your DNA records may be purged from the state DNA database if:
- your conviction was reversed
- you were not charged with a felony within one year of arrest, or
- you were charged with a felony but the charges were dropped, dismissed, resolved after completion of a preprosecution diversion program, or you meet certain other requirements.
(New Mexico Statutes § 29-16-10.)
Getting Legal Help
It is difficult to clean up a criminal record in New Mexico. If you are not sure whether your record qualifies for expungement -- or for advice about your personal situation -- you should contact a qualified criminal law attorney. A good lawyer can guide you each step of the way.