I'm 19 Years old and was recently arrested for possession of Marijuana (about 3.5grams). Since this is my first offense and I have nothing else on my record, what steps can I take to get this removed from my record? How would I go about seeking a public defender to possibly do community service or anything along those lines to get it removed.
Criminal Defense Attorney
If you are being charged with a criminal offense, and you are eligible, you should be able to receive a public defender. That attorney would have a better idea of what steps you can take mitigate the situation in your area. Generally speaking, any steps you can take to seek treatment or to address your alleged drug use will be helpful.
Expungement is available to individuals who commit their offense while under the age of 25, and who are convicted of misdemeanors or less serious felonies. Usually, a request for expungement occurs after the completion of the sentence, though a request is usually made at the time of sentencing that expungement be made available later.
Cases like this are handled differently in different counties, so your experience may vary.
Criminal Defense Attorney
Attorney Szczewski's response is accurate. To elaborate, assuming you were arrested and charged with a crime in Brown County (where De Pere is located), you can contact the local Public Defender office -- Green Bay -- at 920-448-5433 to determine your eligibility for a public defender. Even if you don't qualify for a public defender, you can petition the Court for a court-appointed attorney, or you could hire local counsel yourself. Having an attorney could assist in negotiating an amendment down to a civil forfeiture ticket (i.e., not a criminal charge) or in negotiating a Deferred Prosecution Agreement (whereby you would jump through some hoops that would result in an amended charge or a dismissal if successful).
If you've already been convicted, you could ask the judge for expungement assuming you meet the qualifications set forth in Wis. Stat. 973.015. Hiring an attorney familiar with the sentencing judge could result in his or her aiding you in crafting an argument that will appeal to the Court, but you can do it yourself if you show the court all the positive things you've done since you got sentenced (which would need to be more than simply finishing your sentence in most cases.) If you're set on doing it yourself, this is the form you want to download and file: http://www.wicourts.gov/forms1/circuit/ccform.jsp?FormNumber=CR-266
I am assuming you have not yet been to court.
You want a lawyer. The Green Bay Public Defenders office has good lawyers if you qualify. At 19 you probably do.
What you really want is to avoid having a conviction record. A lawyer can help with this. While this is pending, and after, you want to keep in mind that second offense THC possession in Wisconsin is a felony. First offense can keep you from getting financial aid.
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