It was a pretty good weekend in Louisiana's East Baton Rouge Parish if you have a criminal record and you wanted the COVID vaccine. Why? Because if you played your cards right, you got your shot...and your record has been scrubbed clean.
On Saturday (October 9), the East Baton Rouge Parish District Attorney's Office held a free vaccination event where area residents could get a free COVID vaccination and get assistance filling out the proper paperwork to have their criminal records expunged.
East Baton District Attorney Hillar Moore and members of his staff, the Public Defenders Office and the Clerk of Court all gave up a day off to assist.
Moore said that to be eligible, more than five years must have passed since sentence completion for misdemeanors. For felonies, 10 years since completion of one's sentence was required. In addition, cases that did not result in a conviction were expunged immediately.
Pre-event promotion said those taking part were also eligible to win "free food and a VISA gift card."
Moore says the Parish holds the record expungements monthly, adding that this was a way to encourage an increase in the Parish's vaccination rate. Moore also said that, in most of the cases, the Parish also waived the $550 record expungement fee. An informal count showed more than 100 took advantage of the DA's offer.