S.K.W. V. STATE, 2022 OK 39

Opinion:S.K.W. v. State, 2022 OK 39
Subject matter:Expungement
Date Decided:April 19, 2022
Trial Court:District Court of Canadian County; Judge McCurdy
Route to this Court:Appeal of Denial of Expungement Request; Retained.
Facts:Plaintiff was convicted of three drug-related crimes in 2001, in Canadian County, Oklahoma, and two drug-related crimes in 2002, in Blaine County, Oklahoma. On January 5, 2021, the Governor pardoned all five convictions. Subsequently, plaintiff sought expungement of her criminal records in both Blaine and Canadian Counties pursuant to 22 O.S. Supp. 2019 § 18. The Blaine County District Court granted her expungement request, but the Canadian County District Court denied it. Plaintiff appealed, and the Court retained the cause to address statutory requirements of expungement.
Standard of Review:Not specified; but presumably de novo due to interpretation of statutory requirements. 
Analysis:Section 18(4) provides that persons authorized to file for expungement include the person who has received a full pardon by the Governor for the crime for which the person was sentenced. The plain language of the statute expresses the Legislature’s intent in determining who can have their record expunged. Section 18 subsection 4 says: “The person has received a full pardon by the Governor for the crime for which the person was sentenced.” The plain language allows for Plaintiff’s record to be expunged because Plaintiff received a full pardon for the crimes. 
Outcome:Trial court decision reversed and cause remanded. Plaintiff’s record can be expunged. 
Vote:9-0; All Justices Concur. Kauger, J. (author). 
Other: Request for appeal-related costs granted in the opinion; Plaintiff was pro se.