SC bill would clean slate for law-abiding ex-cons - FOX Carolina 21

SC bill would clean slate for law-abiding ex-cons

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Prisoners stand in a South Carolina jail dressed in black-and-white jump suits. (File/FOX Carolina) Prisoners stand in a South Carolina jail dressed in black-and-white jump suits. (File/FOX Carolina)
COLUMBIA, SC (AP) -

Legislators are working on a bill to erase nonviolent felonies from the records of now-upstanding citizens in hopes of helping them secure high-paying jobs.

Sen. Vincent Sheheen said Thursday the goal is to remove the criminal label that makes a successful career difficult for those who made a mistake and have since turned their lives around.

The Camden Democrat says the state needs them to be working and paying taxes.

Sheheen heard from representatives of law enforcement, crime victims and prosecutors to help his subcommittee tweak a bill the House approved unanimously last year. They want someone's record to be clear at least 10 years to qualify.

Rep. Todd Rutherford, of Columbia, argued against a time frame, saying that people who secure a pardon should have their record expunged immediately.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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