2023 California Code
Penal Code - PEN
CHAPTER 5 - Arrest, by Whom and How Made
Section 851.87.

Universal Citation: CA Penal Code § 851.87 (2023)

851.87. (a) (1) In any case where a person is arrested and successfully completes a prefiling diversion program administered by a prosecuting attorney in lieu of filing an accusatory pleading, the person may petition the superior court that would have had jurisdiction over the matter to issue an order to seal the records pertaining to an arrest and the court may order those records sealed as described in Section 851.92. A copy of the petition shall be served on the law enforcement agency and the prosecuting attorney of the county or city having jurisdiction over the offense, who may request a hearing within 60 days of receipt of the petition. The court may hear the matter no less than 60 days from the date the law enforcement agency and the prosecuting attorney receive a copy of the petition. The prosecuting attorney and the law enforcement agency, through the prosecuting attorney, may present evidence to the court at the hearing.

(2) If the order is made, the court shall give a copy of the order to the person and inform the person that he or she may thereafter state that he or she was not arrested for the charge.

(3) The person may, except as specified in subdivisions (b) and (c), indicate in response to any question concerning the person’s prior criminal record that the person was not arrested.

(4) Subject to subdivisions (b) and (c), a record pertaining to the arrest shall not, without the person’s permission, be used in any way that could result in the denial of any employment, benefit, or certificate.

(b) The person shall be advised that, regardless of the person’s successful completion of the program, the arrest shall be disclosed by the Department of Justice in response to any peace officer application request, and that, notwithstanding subdivision (a), this section does not relieve the person of the obligation to disclose the arrest in response to any direct question contained in any questionnaire or application for a position as a peace officer, as defined in Section 830.

(c) The person shall be advised that an order to seal records pertaining to an arrest made pursuant to this section has no effect on a criminal justice agency’s ability to access and use those sealed records and information regarding sealed arrests, as described in Section 851.92.

(d) As used in this section, “prefiling diversion” is a diversion from prosecution that is offered to a person by the prosecuting attorney in lieu of, or prior to, the filing of an accusatory pleading in court as set forth in Section 950.

(Amended by Stats. 2017, Ch. 680, Sec. 1. (SB 393) Effective January 1, 2018.)

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