Discovery Process in Brunswick County DUI Cases
The discovery process in Brunswick County DUI cases is quite limited. For most DUIs until July of 2021, discovery is limited by law to statements made by the defendant, any videos or photographs of the defendant, or of any other evidence introduced against the defendant. Other information, including witness statements, is not required to be disclosed to the defendant at the end of the discovery process.
Discovery begins immediately after an arrest, and a defense attorney will seek discovery from the Commonwealth’s Attorney. The good news is that, often, Commonwealth’s attorneys in Brunswick County are willing to share more than what is legally required in the discovery process.
An attorney who is knowledgeable about the discovery process, gathering evidence, and building strong arguments could help you. Call a seasoned DUI lawyer today.
Discoverable materials in a DUI case will include any statements made by the defendant, any exculpatory information that might be in possession of law enforcement or the Commonwealth’s attorney, and any photographic evidence or video evidence relevant to the arrest. In addition, it includes any chemical analyses, such as blood or breath tests.
During a DUI stop, it is crucial that the driver understands their rights. Knowing one’s rights could help people limit the amount of evidence the prosecution could have. For example, it is imperative that people remain silent when being questioned by the officer as any statements could be used against them in the case.
How Does Brunswick County Law Enforcement Handle the Discovery Process?
Brunswick County law enforcement submits its materials to the Commonwealth’s attorney’s office, and it is up to the Commonwealth’s attorney’s office to provide the discovery materials to the defense attorney. The discovery process in Brunswick County DUI cases is handled between the prosecutor and the defense attorney entirely, and the court is almost never brought in to handle any discovery disputes.
Request for Discovery
Often, discovery can be requested directly from the prosecutor without having to go through the court. An advantage of hiring a local DUI attorney is their familiar relationships with the prosecutors and their ability to work well with them and obtain discovery from them. Also, a local attorney will know how to negotiate with the prosecution and what defense strategies may be viable.
Role of the Government During Discovery
The government is entirely responsible for collecting the evidence that will be presented against the defendant at trial. Most of that evidence is, at least in theory, discoverable, and the government is responsible for complying with discovery rules and law. The government is the ultimate custodian of all evidence that might be discoverable.
If you have any questions about the discovery process in Brunswick County DUI cases and your rights, reach out to an accomplished defense attorney today. A dedicated lawyer could advocate for you and help you build a strong defense. Call today and set up a consultation with a well-versed legal professional. The sooner you obtain an attorney, the sooner they could begin fighting for you.