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Resource ID: #21371
Subject: Courts
Source: Miami Herald
Date: Jan. 25-27, 2004



In 1941, Florida legislators passed a law that allows judges to block records of the convictions of felony offenders, sparing them a life of potential economic hardship and the scorn associated with being convicted felons. It was intended to be a one-time break to help first-time offenders, but it allows people to say they have never been convicted of a crime. The Herald examined how widespread "withholds" had become across Florida and who had been receiving them. The reporters analyzed a database containing millions of prison and probation records, finding that this law intended as a one-time break for first-time offenders had turned into something much more.

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