Ex parte R.P.G.P.
Expunction is a statutory civil remedy that, when applicable, largely erases the record of an individual’s arrest. It allows one who has been arrested to “deny the occurrence of the arrest and [deny even] the existence of the expunction order” itself, except in a criminal proceeding. It also prohibits governmental and private entities named in the expunction order from maintaining, disseminating, or using the expunged records “for any purpose.” A court will issue an expunction order if the prerequisites and conditions specified in the statute are met. See Tex. Code Crim. Pro. art. 55.01. The statute, however, is not a model of clarity. The Supreme Court of Texas describes it as “linguistically complex and present[ing] a statutory construction challenge that courts at all levels have grappled with.”