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Prince William County DUI Discovery Process 

A person should understand the Prince William County DUI discovery process. The defense has the right to seek discovery from the government in all DUI cases. Under the Virginia Supreme Court rules, a person is limited only to statements made by the accused as well as the results of any scientific tests that have been done when seeking discovery. That being said, in most jurisdictions in Virginia, the Commonwealth’s attorney’s office provides significantly more discovery than what the defendant is entitled to under the rules to include police reports, videos if they exist, statements of witnesses, or other things.

When those discovery items will become available depends entirely on the jurisdiction. In some jurisdictions, an attorney is able to review the prosecutor’s file before a court pursuant to an open file policy. In the other jurisdictions, there is written discovery, which is mailed or in some cases emailed, to the defense attorney. Then in other jurisdictions, a person does not receive discovery until the first day that they have a hearing in court and have an opportunity to interview the officer and are provided with discovery materials at that point. To learn more about the discovery process, contact a skilled attorney.

Discovery Materials

Discovery materials include a police report, video if it exists, and they will include the certificate of analysis, which shows the accused’s blood alcohol content.

In every DUI case in Prince William County, discovery is provided by the prosecutor’s office. That comes pursuant in most cases to a written discovery request, which is submitted through the court. In some jurisdictions that have open file policies, the request is made directly to the Commonwealth’s attorney’s office. Upon receipt of which, a person would be able to review their file.

Circumstances of Subpoenas

A subpoena is a court order that commands that either a person or a thing be brought to court for trial. In some cases, it can be a witness subpoena, which commands that a person come to court. In other cases, it can be what is called a subpoena duces tecum, which commands that documents be brought to court.

There are a number of things that can potentially be subpoenaed in a DUI case. There may be witnesses including expert witnesses who would be subpoenaed to testify on behalf of the defense. There may also be documents such as those that relate to the maintenance and calibration history of machines that test blood alcohol content, which an attorney might subpoena from the Department of Forensic Science. Subpoenas are used in the Prince William County DUI discovery process.

Important Elements to Know About DUI Discovery Process

In the DUI discovery process in Prince William County, it is important to understand that the jurisdiction that the person is in will dictate what discovery is available and when. In some jurisdictions, there will be a fairly significant discovery that is available in an early phase. In other jurisdictions, the discovery is more limited. It is important to consult with an attorney to find out what discovery they can anticipate and at what point in the process they will receive it.