15A-149. Expunction of records when pardon of innocence is granted.

(a) If any person is convicted of a crime and receives a pardon of innocence, the person may petition the court in which the person was convicted on a form approved by the Administrative Office of the Courts supplied by the clerk of court for an order to expunge from all official records any entries relating to the person's apprehension, charge, or trial. Upon receipt of the petition, the clerk of court shall verify that an attested copy of the warrant and return granting a pardon of innocence has been filed with the court in accordance with G.S. 147-25. Upon verification by the clerk that the warrant and return have been filed, the court shall issue an order of expunction.

(b) The order of expunction shall include an instruction that any entries relating to the person's apprehension, charge, or trial shall be expunged from the records of the court and direct all law enforcement agencies, the Department of Adult Correction, the Division of Motor Vehicles, or any other State or local government agencies identified by the petitioner as bearing record of the same to expunge their records of the entries. The clerk shall notify State and local agencies of the court's order as provided in G.S. 15A-150 and shall forward the petition to the Administrative Office of the Courts. The costs of expunging the records, as required under G.S. 15A-150, shall not be taxed against the petitioner.

(c) No person as to whom such an order has been entered under this section shall be held thereafter under any provision of any law to be guilty of perjury, or to be guilty of otherwise giving a false statement or response to any inquiry made for any purpose, by reason of the person's failure to recite or acknowledge any expunged entries concerning apprehension, charge, or trial. (2005-319, s. 1; 2009-510, s. 7; 2011-145, s. 19.1(h); 2017-186, s. 2(vv); 2017-195, s. 1; 2021-180, s. 19C.9(s).)