What are the requirements for discovery of the defense and prosecution in a criminal trial?

Label the subject of your post with your name, and either “Ethics” or “Discovery”.

For example: “J. Doe – Ethics.” This way, everyone can see what the topic of the thread is before opening it.

Your client is stopped early one morning at 0230 hrs. The officer claims to have seen him “weaving back-and-forth” in the lane he was traveling, driving 15 mph under the speed limit, and when he stopped at stop sign, he stopped 25-30 short of the limit line. The officer said that when he approached to investigate a possible DUI, he claims to have observed some white power in a plastic bag at defendant’s feet. Prior to the preliminary hearing, you search a website run by members of the defense bar, and discover the officer had repeatedly written many DUI arrest reports in nearly the same fashion. Those reports had been challenged in court, and some cases were dismissed. Also, the officer had been involved in an internal affairs investigation where he was accused of lying. He is being charged with DUI and possession of methamphetamine.

* Regarding the search, what is the process for defense counsel to challenge the legality of stop and the search? You do not have to prove the stop and search were illegal.

* What else could defense counsel argue regarding the officer’s testimony? Support this with case law.

* Of these, which approach has the highest likelihood of success?

Remember to support your work, either with cases or outside research. Do not use the textbook as a resource.

Second topic.

State Senator Overly Bodacious, an Independent from Tiny County, Arizona, introduces a bill into the state legislature requiring reciprocal discovery including any statements made by a defendant that were free and voluntary and known to defense counsel, except in confidential attorney/client communications.

* What are the requirements for discovery of the defense and prosecution in a criminal trial?

* What are the issues, both for and against this bill?

* What is your opinion about requiring defense and prosecution to disclose information to the each other?

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