June 28, 2022 | Court Process
Not all cases are won by a stunning reveal at trial. Instead, the details may be locked inside a police report, a witness statement, or another piece of evidence, which may help prove your innocence or defense.
Your criminal defense lawyer may file various motions in your case. One important one is the “motion for discovery.” The results of this motion can make or break your case.
What Is Discovery?
Discovery refers to the formal exchange of information between parties in a case. In a civil case, the plaintiff and defendant may exchange information. In a criminal case, the prosecutor may provide evidence to the defendant and vice versa.
In Ohio, the lawyers involved in the criminal matter must follow the formal system of rules outlined in Ohio’s Rules of Criminal Procedure. If the case is federal, the attorneys must follow the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure.
What Is a Motion for Discovery?
You or your lawyer may file a motion for discovery to request that the state produce evidence it plans to introduce at trial. Your lawyer needs to know the type of evidence the state will use against you at trial so that they can properly prepare for your case. This type of motion is common in criminal cases and is typically standard protocol.
Filing a motion for discovery shows that your lawyer is taking your case seriously and is holding the prosecution to meet its high burden of proof. Your lawyer needs to see what the prosecution has up its sleeve to defend you and make solid recommendations about whether it is advisable to accept a plea deal. This type of motion is not the type of motion that would revoke a plea deal if you filed it.
The prosecution can also file a motion for discovery to request information about the type of evidence you and your lawyer plan to present at trial. For example, the prosecutor may want to know who you plan on calling as a witness or want to see receipts to establish an alibi.
However, the Fifth Amendment protects you from self-incrimination, so you do not have to be a witness against yourself or provide evidence that would implicate you.
Examples of Information and Evidence Requested in a Motion for Discovery
Some examples that your lawyer may request as part of their motion for discovery are:
- Photos or videos of the crime scene
- Witness statements
- Police reports or notes
- Lab tests and reports
- Alibi witness statements
Generally, your lawyer will want to receive as much information as possible to help prepare your defense.
How a Dayton Criminal Defense Lawyer Can Help You File a Motion for Discovery in Your Case
The Ohio Rules of Criminal Procedure govern how your case will proceed. They discuss how you must request information, to whom you must request it, deadlines by which you must request it, and other pertinent details.
If you do not properly follow these rules, you may lose your right to receive the information that could help exonerate you or mitigate penalties. Experienced criminal defense lawyers are familiar with these rules and how to obtain the information they need to aggressively defend the rights of their clients. When the stakes of a case are high, it is a good idea to have capable legal representation on your side.
Contact the Dayton Criminal Defense Attorneys at Suhre & Associates, LLC For Help Today
Suhre & Associates, LLC – Dayton
130 West Second Street, #310
Dayton, OH 45402