Charlotte, NC asked in Immigration Law and Animal / Dog Law for North Carolina

Q: Do I need court record and a written letter?

I was arrested in 2003 for animal cruelty. Main reason was a dog got behind me and I was scared so I kicked the dog and it ran into the streets and got ran over by a car. I have the right to protect myself is all I was doing. I stay a day in jail and was released the next day. I went to court a month later and I pleased guilty and my case was dismissed. There were no charges. I am planning to become a citizen soon and was curious if I should mention this in N-400?

I love dogs now and have a fan page just for this. I regret for kicking the dog.

I am also not sure if I ever did sign up for Selective Services when I was between 18-26 years of age. Most likely I am not registered. I never knew about it. In form N-400 it says I have to write a letter. What should I do? Please guide. Thank you.

1 Lawyer Answer
Hector E. Quiroga
Hector E. Quiroga
  • Immigration Law Lawyer
  • Las Vegas, NV

A: Regarding the animal cruelty issue: it will depend, first of all, on the statute under which you are charged. Also, you say you pled guilty and that your case was dismissed. If you pled guilty, your case was not likely dismissed, and there were likely charges. You will want to consult with an immigration attorney familiar with criminal law in your area to find out the possible implications in your case.

It is also likely that, because this all happened more than five years ago and is thus outside the five-year period for showing good moral character this will not impact you—again, depending on the statute under which you were charged, etc.

Regarding the Selective Service issue. If you are not registered, and you are between 26 and 31 (or 26 and 29 if you are filing for citizenship base on marriage to and living with a USC), then you must explain why you failed to register and show that you did not do so willfully. If you are over 31 (or 29), then there should be no issue.

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