NACDL - Bridgeman, et al. v. District Attorney

Bridgeman, et al. v. District Attorney

Brief for the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and the Massachusetts Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers as Amici Curiae.

Brief filed: 12/18/2014

Documents

Bridgeman, et al. v. District Attorney

Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts; Case No. SJC-11764

Argument

Due process and the Rules of Professional Conduct require the prosecutors to promptly notify individual defendants of the exculpatory evidence in each affected case. Because the Commonwealth was aware of this exculpatory evidence at the time of each trial or plea, Brady v. Maryland requires prompt disclosure to each defendant. That a Brady violation occurred in each Dookhan defendant’s case is clear. Prior decisions of both the U.S. Supreme Court and this Court support the conclusion that Brady requires disclosure for defendants whose trials included Dookhan-tainted evidence. Prior decisions of both the U.S. Supreme Court and this Court support the conclusion that Brady requires disclosure for defendants in Dookhan-tainted cases who pled guilty. All prosecutors of Dookhan cases have an ethical obligation to promptly disclose this exculpatory evidence pursuant to Massachusetts Rule of Professional Conduct 3.8(d).

Author(s)

Jean-Jacques Cabou, Joanna Perini-Abbott, Perkins Coie LLP, Phoenix, AZ; Daniel Gelb, Gelb & Gelb LLP, Boston, MA; Elizabeth A. Lunt, MACDL, Boston, MA.