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  S.B. No. 1611
 
 
 
 
AN ACT
  relating to discovery in a criminal case.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  This Act shall be known as the Michael Morton
  Act.
         SECTION 2.  Article 39.14, Code of Criminal Procedure, is
  amended by amending Subsection (a) and adding Subsections (c)
  through (n) to read as follows:
         (a)  Subject to the restrictions provided by Section
  264.408, Family Code, and Article 39.15 of this code, as soon as
  practicable after receiving a timely request from the defendant the
  state shall [Upon motion of the defendant showing good cause
  therefor and upon notice to the other parties, except as provided by
  Article 39.15, the court in which an action is pending shall order
  the State before or during trial of a criminal action therein
  pending or on trial to] produce and permit the inspection and the
  electronic duplication, copying, and [or] photographing, by or on
  behalf of the defendant, of any offense reports, any designated
  documents, papers, written or recorded statements [statement] of
  the defendant or a witness, including witness statements of law
  enforcement officers but not including[, (except written
  statements of witnesses and except] the work product of counsel for
  the state in the case and their investigators and their notes or
  report[)], or any designated books, accounts, letters,
  photographs, or objects or other tangible things not otherwise
  privileged that[, which] constitute or contain evidence material to
  any matter involved in the action and that [which] are in the
  possession, custody, or control of the state or any person under
  contract with the state [State or any of its agencies].  The state
  may provide to the defendant electronic duplicates of any documents
  or other information described by this article. The [order shall
  specify the time, place and manner of making the inspection and
  taking the copies and photographs of any of the aforementioned
  documents or tangible evidence; provided, however, that the] rights
  granted to the defendant under this article do [herein granted
  shall] not extend to written communications between the state and
  an agent, representative, or employee of the state. This article
  does not authorize [State or any of its agents or representatives or
  employees. Nothing in this Act shall authorize] the removal of the
  documents, items, or information [such evidence] from the
  possession of the state [State], and any inspection shall be in the
  presence of a representative of the state [State].
         (c)  If only a portion of the applicable document, item, or
  information is subject to discovery under this article, the state
  is not required to produce or permit the inspection of the remaining
  portion that is not subject to discovery and may withhold or redact
  that portion. The state shall inform the defendant that a portion
  of the document, item, or information has been withheld or
  redacted. On request of the defendant, the court shall conduct a
  hearing to determine whether withholding or redaction is justified
  under this article or other law.
         (d)  In the case of a pro se defendant, if the court orders
  the state to produce and permit the inspection of a document, item,
  or information under this subsection, the state shall permit the
  pro se defendant to inspect and review the document, item, or
  information but is not required to allow electronic duplication as
  described by Subsection (a).
         (e)  Except as provided by Subsection (f), the defendant, the
  attorney representing the defendant, or an investigator, expert,
  consulting legal counsel, or other agent of the attorney
  representing the defendant may not disclose to a third party any
  documents, evidence, materials, or witness statements received
  from the state under this article unless:
               (1)  a court orders the disclosure upon a showing of
  good cause after notice and hearing after considering the security
  and privacy interests of any victim or witness; or
               (2)  the documents, evidence, materials, or witness
  statements have already been publicly disclosed.
         (f)  The attorney representing the defendant, or an
  investigator, expert, consulting legal counsel, or agent for the
  attorney representing the defendant, may allow a defendant,
  witness, or prospective witness to view the information provided
  under this article, but may not allow that person to have copies of
  the information provided, other than a copy of the witness's own
  statement. Before allowing that person to view a document or the
  witness statement of another under this subsection, the person
  possessing the information shall redact the address, telephone
  number, driver's license number, social security number, date of
  birth, and any bank account or other identifying numbers contained
  in the document or witness statement.  For purposes of this section,
  the defendant may not be the agent for the attorney representing the
  defendant.
         (g)  Nothing in this section shall be interpreted to limit an
  attorney's ability to communicate regarding his or her case within
  the Texas Disciplinary Rules of Professional Conduct, except for
  the communication of information identifying any victim or witness,
  including name, except as provided in Subsections (e) and (f),
  address, telephone number, driver's license number, social
  security number, date of birth, and bank account information or any
  information that by reference would make it possible to identify a
  victim or a witness.  Nothing in this subsection shall prohibit the
  disclosure of identifying information to an administrative, law
  enforcement, regulatory, or licensing agency for the purposes of
  making a good faith complaint.
         (h)  Notwithstanding any other provision of this article,
  the state shall disclose to the defendant any exculpatory,
  impeachment, or mitigating document, item, or information in the
  possession, custody, or control of the state that tends to negate
  the guilt of the defendant or would tend to reduce the punishment
  for the offense charged.
         (i)  The state shall electronically record or otherwise
  document any document, item, or other information provided to the
  defendant under this article.
         (j)  Before accepting a plea of guilty or nolo contendere, or
  before trial, each party shall acknowledge in writing or on the
  record in open court the disclosure, receipt, and list of all
  documents, items, and information provided to the defendant under
  this article.
         (k)  If at any time before, during, or after trial the state
  discovers any additional document, item, or information required to
  be disclosed under Subsection (h), the state shall promptly
  disclose the existence of the document, item, or information to the
  defendant or the court.
         (l)  A court may order the defendant to pay costs related to
  discovery under this article, provided that costs may not exceed
  the charges prescribed by Subchapter F, Chapter 552, Government
  Code.
         (m)  To the extent of any conflict, this article prevails
  over Chapter 552, Government Code.
         (n)  This article does not prohibit the parties from agreeing
  to discovery and documentation requirements equal to or greater
  than those required under this article.
         SECTION 3.  The change in law made by this Act applies to the
  prosecution of an offense committed on or after the effective date
  of this Act. The prosecution of an offense committed before the
  effective date of this Act is covered by the law in effect when the
  offense was committed, and the former law is continued in effect for
  this purpose. For purposes of this section, an offense is committed
  before the effective date of this Act if any element of the offense
  occurs before the effective date.
         SECTION 4.  This Act takes effect January 1, 2014.
 
 
 
 
 
  ______________________________ ______________________________
     President of the Senate Speaker of the House     
 
         I hereby certify that S.B. No. 1611 passed the Senate on
  April 11, 2013, by the following vote:  Yeas 31, Nays 0.
 
 
  ______________________________
  Secretary of the Senate    
 
         I hereby certify that S.B. No. 1611 passed the House on
  May 14, 2013, by the following vote:  Yeas 146, Nays 0, one
  present not voting.
 
 
  ______________________________
  Chief Clerk of the House   
 
 
 
  Approved:
 
  ______________________________ 
              Date
 
 
  ______________________________ 
            Governor