WAUKEGAN, Ill. — Prosecutors in suburban Chicago are starting a new program to help first-time offenders accused of some misdemeanors keep their criminal record clean.

The Daily Herald reports (http://bit.ly/2sjFH72 ) the program launched by the Lake County state’s attorney’s office is for nonviolent offenders charged with crimes such as minor drug offenses or retail theft.

If those offenders complete certain requirements such as public service, restitution or drug counseling, they may have the charges dismissed and their record expunged.

Lake County State’s Attorney Michael Nerheim says the program is an opportunity for offenders to take responsibility for their actions but also to go on with their lives without the stigma of a criminal conviction. Nerheim calls it “a win-win for Lake County.”

Information from: Daily Herald, http://www.dailyherald.com

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