State lawmakers pass sweeping Clean Slate Bill

State lawmakers have passed a sweeping Clean Slate Bill Thursday - erasing the criminal histories of 300,000 residents.

News 12 Staff

May 27, 2021, 9:40 PM

Updated 1,091 days ago

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State lawmakers have passed a sweeping Clean Slate Bill Thursday - erasing the criminal histories of 300,000 residents.
The criminal records would be automatically erased if the offender stayed out of trouble.
Dawn Grant-Lockley, a licensed therapist, says her record still follows her.
"When I got a job, I was harassed," she says.
Supporters say the bill is watered-down. Lawmakers removed more than a dozen crimes including class-C felonies - plus sexual assaults, strangulation, violent gun offenses and crimes against children, the elderly and the disabled.
It was Democrats who demanded the changes.
"When we look at child pornography, that crime is usually a tell that someone is looking to abuse a child," says state Rep. Liz Linehan.
It means New Britain resident Manuel Sandoval, convicted sexual assault two decades ago, will keep his criminal record.
"According to the system once a crook always a crook, like people never change their lives," he says.
Gov. Ned Lamont says he’s “inclined” to sign the trimmed-down version of the bill, but he won’t commit until he takes a closer look at which crimes would be erased automatically.
"I've suggested maybe we start with misdemeanors and work from there," he says.
If enacted, affected records wouldn’t be automatically erased until January of 2023.
Those who've lived with a record for years are begging for a fresh start.
"I, and so many other people that have convictions, deserve a second chance," says Grant-Lockley.


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