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  1. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    California
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    20,594

    Default Re: Obtaining Records of Criminal Case in Virginia

    I don't know how it is in VA, but I'm not familiar with any permanent evidence storage at courts out here. Unless the evidence is the form of documents or photos that can easily be included into a file or file box, I suspect you'll have to check with the involved law enforcement agency. Though, depending on whether or not the case is still within an appellate timeline or not, the evidence may have been destroyed, returned, or otherwise disposed of.
    **********
    Retired Cal Cop Sergeant & Teacher

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

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  2. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2017
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    California
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    444

    Default Re: Obtaining Records of Criminal Case in Virginia

    In CA, evidence is preserved and remains in the court's custody on all death cases, life cases and years to life cases. It's SOP for defense counsel to file an order with the court for the evidence to be preserved. Other major felonies, the evidence is maintained at least 10 years and a notice to counsel and defendant of any intent by the court beyond that to destroy any evidence.

  3. #13
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    Sep 2005
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    California
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    20,594

    Default Re: Obtaining Records of Criminal Case in Virginia

    That's not universal in CA. In my county, the investigating agencies retained the evidence and were responsible for storage. Though, we had no death penalty or life sentence cases that I recall. I would have been happy to have released other evidence to the court, but, alas, they always came back to us with relevant orders for retention (which we would do anyway pursuant to relevant Evidence Code sections or other statutes as appropriate).
    **********
    Retired Cal Cop Sergeant & Teacher

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2017
    Location
    California
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    444

    Default Re: Obtaining Records of Criminal Case in Virginia

    When I wrote court's custody, it didn't mean it was kept at the courthouse although some smaller counties do keep the evidence in their own storage area. Just like when you execute a search warrant, technically, that evidence seized is in the court's custody but the police have actual physical custody. So police agencies may be storing the evidence, it's just not theirs to do as they please.

  5. #15
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    Sep 2005
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    California
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    20,594

    Default Re: Obtaining Records of Criminal Case in Virginia

    Quote Quoting LegalWriter
    View Post
    When I wrote court's custody, it didn't mean it was kept at the courthouse although some smaller counties do keep the evidence in their own storage area. Just like when you execute a search warrant, technically, that evidence seized is in the court's custody but the police have actual physical custody. So police agencies may be storing the evidence, it's just not theirs to do as they please.
    Ah, ok. What you describe has been my experience,
    though in a smaller county. We would hold the court's evidence for them, though even if the court didn't specifically tag an item, there are statutes covering how long they must be held after the conclusion of a trial, depending upon the outcome. Though L.A. County does hold some evidence for serious cases including death sentence and life imprisonment cases. They were having storage issues over the years that came up in the property & evidence literature as space got tight. None of the coubty courts where I worked had their own evidence storage that I was ever aware of, so LA County stuck out.
    **********
    Retired Cal Cop Sergeant & Teacher

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    19,670

    Default Re: Obtaining Records of Criminal Case in Virginia

    Getting back on track. Physical evidence is not obliged to be disclosed under the Commonwealths FOIA. The stuff that is in open testimony most certainly is. Any affidavits or other filings with the court are as well.

  7. #17
    Join Date
    May 2020
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Obtaining Records of Criminal Case in Virginia

    Iím glad I opened an account on here, learning a lot.
    I saw a webinar today with an attorney working cases of innocent people in Virginia and she touched on how a lot of the times when they go back to investigate, and begin asking for police reports and filing FOIA requests, they often get denied and that Virginia specifically is super strict with what the court will give you.

    Iím still waiting to hear back from the person charged with the crime.

    If I donít hear back I guess Iíll have to let it go, but still interested in Virginia as a state that was/is a hot bed for wrongful convictions. Much more so than other states because of laws related to appeals and the ability to present new evidence once youíve being convicted of a crime.

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