My question involves criminal records for the state of: Ohio
I was recently convicted of a non-violent M2 during a bench trial. I strongly feel that I am not guilty of this crime. By simply browsing online I have come across over a half dozen appellate court cases in which a conviction similar to mine was overturned. This leads me to believe that I have a good chance of having the verdict remanded.
Alternatively, Ohio offers a process to seal records but I would have to wait twelve months before I could apply for this. Furthermore, I have heard that the efficacy of this process is questionable as to how effectively it prevents potential employers from viewing the record.
My conundrum is this. Even if I successfully appeal the verdict, the decision of the appellate court will most likely be available online. An HR person would simply have to google my name and would likely find it. If the appeal were to fail than that would make the expungement process essentially useless for the aforementioned reason.
I am fretting over what to do. Would it be best to simply wait a year and apply to have the conviction sealed? What background checks are most commonly used by employers? Would expungement offer me reasonable protection in regards to private employers? How about government employers? Should I gamble and attempt to have the decision appealed? I understand that this site is not meant to constitute legal advice and that there are countless factors to consider, but I would appreciate advice from anyone who has personal experience in these matters.