In criminal matters, most discovery is managed
through Standard Discovery Orders (SDO) (see Standard Discovery Order links below), or the provisions for discovery in the
Texas Code of Criminal Procedure. The District Clerk or the Court Coordinator can provide a copy of the SDO for your review.
In Grimes County, the SDO is included in the Local Rules, and a copy may be obtained on this Website or
from the District Clerk.
to the provisions in the SDO, or Texas Code of Criminal Procedure, defense counsel is welcome to file supplemental discovery
motions and requests. However, each supplemental discovery motion or request must state how the particular request differs
from the SDO or Code, and what the supplemental discovery is intended to produce. Certainly, trial tactics and strategy should
not be disclosed; only the focus of the supplemental request. Absent an agreement from the State, counsel should be prepared
to argue the position in court. Further, a certificate of conference should be included in the supplemental discovery motion
stating the outcome of discussions between the defense and the State.
A Standard Discovery Order
will not automatically be entered in every case that is filed in Waller County. After a case has gone through
the Motions setting, in most instances the Court will issue a Standard Discovery Order, a Standard Joint Motion in Limine,
and a Criminal Trial Preparation Order. If desired earlier, defense counsel may request the entry of the SDO, which will then,
in most circumstances, be entered. A request for the SDO may be done at Arraignment, at the Motions hearings and as late as
the Pretrial hearing, so long as adequate time is allowed for compliance by the State before the case is called for trial.
Except in unusual circumstances, failure to timely present discovery issues will not be
grounds for a trial continuance.
The State and Defense should become familiar with the
need for defense disclosures to the State, as the Standard Discovery Order does cover that requirement.
It is important that defense counsel contact the District Attorney in order to obtain passwords and access
to online discovery mandated under the "Michael Morton Act."