Renton, WA asked in Criminal Law for Washington

Q: Do I, the accused, have a right to have a copy of the discovery?

I want to see my discovery. The full discovery of evidence. My attorney says he will get in trouble if he gives it to me

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1 Lawyer Answer
Stan Glisson
Stan Glisson
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Tacoma, WA
  • Licensed in Washington

A: That's a good question, this is an odd and frustrating area of the law. There actually are a number of laws and rules that prohibit your lawyer from just handing over (or copying) the discovery to you, without approval from the prosecutor's office that provided it. The discovery is, in a sense, just on loan to your attorney from the prosecutor, so the rules prevent that information being given out to anyone - you included.

With the approval of the prosecutor you may be able to get a redacted copy, although that creates some work and delay.

You also could make a public records request to the police agency that investigated the case, and get your own copy that way, although that would also likely have redactions.

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