McGeorge School of Law

Clean Slate Day Helps Many Change Felony Records

Muhammad, Pal, Staten, Ward

(From left) Aaliyah Muhammad, one of the organizers from Legal Services for Prisoners with Children; third-year student Aysha Pal, one of the event organizers; Keith Staten, '92, criminal defense attorney; and, Justin Ward, criminal defense attorney.

McGeorge School of Law teamed up with All of Us or None and Legal Services for Prisoners with Children to present Clean Slate Day the afternoon of Saturday April 23, 2016.

Members of the community were invited to receive assistance with felony convictions that could be reduced through Proposition 47, expunged, or be subject to a Certificate of Rehabilitation. Approximately 50 participants were helped at the four-hour event.

To prepare participants to meet with an attorney, first-year McGeorge and UC Davis students handled intake meetings, and second- and third-year students reviewed RAP sheets. Participants then met with volunteer attorneys and paralegals to thoroughly review options, complete forms and understand the process.

Third-year McGeorge student Aysha Pal was a key organizer of the event on campus, along with fourth-year evening student Jordan Davis. Alumni Keith Staten, '92, and Amanda Massimini,'14, were among the volunteers.

"The goals of this event were to do more than just explain and refer," said Aysha. "I wanted participants to walk away with completed forms ready for filing, bringing them one step closer to a clean slate, and we achieved that goal thanks to all of the volunteers and everyone involved with this event!"

One participant wrote a thank you note for helping him and the community. "I wanted to take some time to express my gratitude for the services provided at the 'clean slate day.' If there is anything I can do to help you further this cause, do not hesitate to ask. Again thank you on behalf of all who received services on Saturday."

Prop 47 was passed in Nov. 4, 2014, and it re-categorized some nonviolent offenses as misdemeanors, rather than felonies. Prop 47 applies to future convictions, and the measure also allows for people currently incarcerated or on probation for crimes covered by the measure to petition for re-sentencing. Unfortunately, the retroactive re-sentencing aspect of Prop 47 is only in effect until November 2017. Expungements (under Penal Code 1203.4, 1203.4a, and 1203.41) remove not only past convictions, but the stigma associated with a felony conviction. Expunging felony convictions help people with employment, education, public benefits, and more. Clean Slate Day volunteers also helped participants who were not eligible for expungements apply for a Certificate of Rehabilitation, which enhances the employment and licensing opportunities of the participants.

Two more Clean Slate/Prop 47 events are scheduled in Sacramento in May and June:

  • Saturday, May 21 from noon to 4 p.m. at Unity Church (9249 Folsom Blvd., Sacramento, CA 95814)
  • Saturday, June 25 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at McClatchy Park (3500 Fifth Ave., Sacramento, CA 95817)

Anyone who wants to volunteer or get help at the upcoming events on May 21 and June 25 can contact Aaliyah Muhammad at 916.501.9988, {Download a flyer (pdf).}


Clean Slate Day at McGeorge