New Indiana law lets ex-offenders close records

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - Thousands of Indiana residents with old low-level criminal convictions can now ask a judge to seal those convictions from employers under a new state law meant to give those who've turned their lives around a second chance.

The law that took effect Friday covers those who completed their sentences more than eight years ago on misdemeanors or low-level felonies that aren't violent crimes or sex crimes. Police could still view the records, but they would be off-limits to non-criminal justice uses.

Scott Hohl of the Marion County clerk's office tells The Indianapolis Star that officials have no idea how many people will petition to have their records sealed.

Democratic Rep. Bill Crawford of Indianapolis says he hopes the law helps remove employment barriers for ex-offenders.

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