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Getting an old conviction completely quashed.

(5 Posts)
aermingers Sat 22-Nov-14 17:24:39

I received a caution for ABH back in 1997 a couple of weeks after my 18th birthday.

As a bit of background, I grew up with parents who were very cruel, abusive and controlling.

I had been for a night out with a few friends. These were all friends I had known since primary school and were normal people from respectable families. Somehow in my Mum and Dad's heads they had decided that I hung out with a load of reprobates and criminals and was in with a bad crowd. They had never bothered to get to know my friends who weren't allowed to come to my house. They also viewed going out for a couple of pints with your friends on a Friday night as a completely outrageous ways of spending time in the way that most parents might view their children going to a coke fuelled orgy.

Anyway, whilst on this night out my bag was stolen. It wasn't stolen by one of my friends and I reported it to the police. It had my passport in which I used for ID (not much ID was available then) and also my front door keys.

I called my parents to let them know and when I returned home had to knock on the door. When my father opened the door he dragged me in by the scruff of my neck and he and my mother proceeded to violently attack me as retribution for my bag being stolen which they thought was my fault because of the company I kept. They pushed me down onto the floor and hit me, I was trying to get up. My mother had a nose job about 2 weeks before this incident and her nose was still healing, as a result during the struggle her nose was touched, not intentionally but either because I was struggling to get up or even done by herself while she was attacking me. I couldn't get to the phone and it didn't even occur to me to call the police but I ran and tried to get away from them, they followed me from room to room and I couldn't get away, they cornered me in the kitchen and I picked up a knife, not with the intention of hurting them but as warning to make them leave me alone. It shocked them and my Dad ran to call the police and my mother backed off so I dropped the knife and locked myself in the background.

Anyway. I was arrested and taken to a police station. The policeman told me that I wouldn't need a solicitor and proceeded to interview me. They kept saying over and over again that I had attacked my mother and that her nose had been bleeding as a result. I kept insisting they had attacked me and also told them that my mother had an operation and that was why her nose was bleeding, that it wasn't the reflection of the violence of an attack, but rather that it was vulnerable and had been knocked.

They put me back in the cells and phoned my parents who confirmed the operation. The police looked a bit shame faced but they started putting pressure on me about cautions and lied saying that there would be no record at all under any circumstances after 3 years. They obviously saw it as a boring domestic that they just wanted wrapped up and they said they would give me a caution if I admitted attacking my mother.

I was taken back to a police interview room and given an interview which consisted of me being asked over and over and over and over and over and over if I had attacked my mother which I repeatedly denied. Eventually they broke me down and I said yes because I couldn't take any more. I was given a caution for ABH which I also think overepresents the severity of the injury as it was caused mainly because of the previous surgery and not as a reflection of violence that my mother had been subjected to.

I want to get this quashed. Partly because I was very young, ignorant of the law and police procedure and was encouraged by the police not to take up my right to legal representation. And also because of the pressure applied and the fact the police lied to me and misrepresented what a caution meant.

Are there any circumstances where you can have this struck off your record entirely and quashed? I am hoping either to take up teaching or emigrate to another country in the next few years and it may cause problems with both.

I just feel it was really unjust and don't want this incident in which I genuinely was the victim to reflect on the way people view me 18 years on.

LIZS Sat 22-Nov-14 17:29:54

I doubt it because you admit you had a knife and dv may well be hard to prove so far on . A caution isn't the same as a conviction though. For DBS you can declare it .

aermingers Sat 22-Nov-14 20:44:11

I didn't 'have a knife', I picked up a knife in the kitchen, a kitchen knife, after I'd been assaulted, it wasn't even to defend myself as I had no intention of using it, I just wanted to get them to back off. And the knife was completely irrelevant in the caution. I was cautioned for ABH on my mother and I did not do that, I may have touched her nose while she and my father were holding me down and assaulting me but I did not assault her.

prh47bridge Sat 22-Nov-14 20:48:12

Unfortunately this offence will appear on DBS checks. Given that it was a long time ago many employers will be happy to employ you anyway, especially if you give a full explanation. It is not necessarily a bar to a career in teaching and it may not stop you from emigrating depending on the country you want to go to. I believe the USA, for example, would give you a visa although it may take several months if they decide you need a waiver.

You can ask the police to remove your record from the Police National Computer under the Exceptional Cases Procedure. However, successful applications are rare. If, for example, you could show beyond doubt that there was no offence or that your arrest was unlawful you should be able to get it removed. If you want to try you will need to apply to the Chief Constable of the force that issued the caution.

aermingers Sat 22-Nov-14 23:33:25

Thanks PRH. That's a starting point. I will check it out.

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