INDIANAPOLIS — Damon Lane has worked for Indianapolis mayors Greg Ballard and Joe Hogsett. His community service has earned him too many awards to count, he said.
But there have been times when none of that mattered. He’s 49 now and said he is still paying for the very serious felony crimes he committed as a youth.
“I know there’s certain crimes out there that, you know, people would be horrified if they didn’t know,” Lane said. “But when we’re talking about you know, like drugs or you know, some of these other crimes, like a guy shouldn’t have to deal with that for the rest of his life.”
Hundreds of thousands of Hoosiers have some kind of criminal record that hangs over their heads when they seek jobs or try to rent an apartment.
Indiana law lets people get those old criminal records expunged after they’ve stayed out of trouble for five or eight years, depending on the offense. Yet for those who have been convicted of serious crimes, an expungement in Indiana won’t hide those crimes from public eyes.
“You can expunge a high-level felony, but it still shows up on your records marked as expunged,” said Carrie Hagan, an associate professor at Indiana University’s Robert H. McKinney School of Law.
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