When I started to strongly feel that my court appointed atty was trying to get me "the best deal" rather than actually defend me against a crime that he admitted there really wasn't evidence I committed I chose to go pro se. The DA said that since he gave the discovery of 3 videos and the police statement to my lawyer he did not have to give it to me. My former lawyer asked the judge if he could make me a copy of the discovery and the judge told him no. Is this legal?

  • 2
    Why can't the public defender just give you the discovered evidence, rather than copy it? Commented Aug 17, 2019 at 22:10
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    What jurisdiction is this in. What country, and if a federal country such as the US or Canada, what state or province? If this is the US, Brady vs Maryland would apply. *Under that decision you are entitled to receive the relevant information, an if it is not available to you to prepare for trial, that may be grounds to overturn a conviction, but you should get this into the record. Commented Aug 18, 2019 at 0:35
  • Smith County Tx USA. He was left on as back up in case I change my mind about self representation but the judge said he is not allowed to do anything else as back up, including giving or sharing discovery with me. There was a court reporter there when this was addressed Commented Aug 18, 2019 at 17:03
  • The judges actions seem spurious in disallowing your attorney to make copies, you should check the instructions with your former attorney and check out the Texas State Commission on Judicial Conduct.
    – A. K.
    Commented Aug 21, 2019 at 1:03

2 Answers 2



But that’s not what the DA has done.

The DA gave you discovery when he gave it to your lawyer, it is not the DA’s problem. Sort it out with your ex-lawyer.

  • The judge left him as a back up lawyer but told him he could not give me the discovery and also that he could not help me in any way, only be back up, to take over if I change my mind about going pro se. If fact when the judge gave me a date for my jury trial I asked him why I wasn't given the choice of a bench or jury trial and he told me he wouldn't answer that since I was representing myself. They scare people into taking plea deals in this county and they're very unhappy I'm not going along with that Commented Aug 18, 2019 at 17:00


I don't know the rules in Texas, but in some jurisdictions, the rules allow for certain material to be designated as only available to counsel -- usually because of the sensitivity of the information, which might include addresses for police or witnesses, or child pornography, or other records that the court does not want to be widely released.

If the case isn't dealing with that type of information, though, I can't understand why a judge would prohibit your former attorney from letting you view discoverable material.

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