In a DUI case, the charged individual has the right to discovery. Discovery is any evidence that the prosecution/the state has collected. The discovery process can be difficult to navigate alone. A qualified DUI attorney could guide an individual through the process, and help them recover West Palm Beach DUI discovery process evidence. Work with a skilled defense attorney that could work towards a positive outcome for you.
Defining Discoverable Materials
Discoverable materials would be any and all statements made by any law enforcement officer or civilians made prior to an arrest or subsequent to an investigation and arrest, any audio recordings that are made of that investigation, any video recordings that were made pursuant to that investigation, and any evidence of any chemical test given by them. That includes the actual registration of the instrument, the annual maintenance of the instrument, the monthly maintenance or calibration records, and so forth and so on as well as logs that are taken of every other person that gave a breath test.
West Palm Beach DUI discovery process evidence is anything that the government is going to use against the person either to prove guilt or that the government knows or should know that it is exculpatory or that will help the person show innocence. The government has to give everything that they have, good, bad, and indifferent. If they have it, one is entitled to see it, expect it, and use it. It is a person’s right from the due process clause. Blood test records or lab records are discoverable. Blood test samples are something we discussed earlier as far as getting a split sample. If they have preserved the sample of blood, a person has a right to a portion of that and have that tested in an own independent blood at their own test.
How Law Enforcement Treats Discovery
Law enforcement will gather all the fruits of their investigation and turn it over to the State Attorney’s Office and to the court. An experienced West Palm Beach DUI lawyer will request in writing that the State Attorney’s Office and police supply all these materials and the State Attorney’s Office or the prosecutor’s office has 30 to 45 days to submit that.
It is a relatively routine process. It is a mandatory process for them to comply with. If they do not give it to a person, that can be the basis for exclusion of certain evidence or even dismissal of the charges if they do not have any evidence.
Demanding Discovery as a Defense Attorney
An experienced West Palm Beach DUI attorney wants to demand discovery. Just like a doctor wants to take x-rays and blood tests and the doctor wants to see what is going on, a lawyer wants to participate in discovery to see what the evidence is against the person, whether it was legally gathered against them, whether or not it is sufficient to prove the case, and whether or not the person has any defenses to discovery or evidence that the Government is going to use against the person.
The request for West Palm Beach DUI discovery process evidence must be submitted to the court. The attorney files a pleading called a demand for discovery, they have to file in with the court, and they can request it directly from the government and they will give it to the attorney.
An experienced West Palm Beach DUI lawyer will want a record of the request, the date and time that it was made, and the form in which it was made so that the clock starts ticking and the Prosecutor cannot forget about it. It is an official request. It is an official proceeding. There are rules that need to be complied with. The request should be submitted to the court on a formal basis.
Role the Government Plays in Conducting Discovery
It is the government’s job to gather all of the evidence that they are going to use against a person, all the evidence that was obtained by law enforcement, put it together, and make it available to the person—either give them a copy of it or tell them to come their office so that they can make copies of whatever they want.
The West Palm Beach state attorney’s office will make one set of copies upon a request of every piece of paper, every piece of evidence, every list that they have. As far as DUI DVDs go, or a digital or audio recording, those are typically requested directly from the law enforcement agencies.
It is the government’s job whether it is the prosecutor’s office or law enforcement to get any piece of evidence, any document they have gathered that one is entitled to get so that the defendant can have a fair trial and know what the evidence is against them. If an individual needs help accessing West Palm Beach DUI discovery process evidence, they should consult a qualified DUI attorney that could help.