Jacksonville criminal lawyers know how important the criminal discovery process is. The evidence that a Jacksonville criminal lawyer obtains from this process determines what route to take in a case. More importantly, Jacksonville criminal lawyers advise their clients based on the evidence discovered. Therefore, discovery is the most important part of a case. Jacksonville criminal lawyers seek all the evidence that the State of Florida has against a criminal defendant, and the State has an obligation to provide it. However, this does not always happen.
Florida law provides a remedy when the state fails to disclose evidence called a Richardson Hearing. If a discovery violation occurs, the trial court must hold a hearing. At the Richardson Hearing, the trial court must ask 3 questions:
- Was the State’s violation willful and inadvertent?
- Was the violation substantial?
- What effect did it have on the criminal defendant’s ability to prepare for trial?
If a Jacksonville criminal lawyer succeeds at the Richardson Hearing, the trial court must determine what remedy is proper. In some cases, the court merely allows the defense a few more minutes to adjust its case. In other cases, the court will penalize the State and refuse to allow the evidence to be submitted to the jury.
To learn more about Richardson Hearings contact a Jacksonville Criminal Lawyer or read the most recent Richardson Hearing case, Curry v. State.pdf.