Why not criminal discovery? This question has been posited by legal scholars and learned jurists alike since the liberalization of discovery methods under the modern codes of civil procedure. As inexact as the term criminal discovery may be and, according to its critics, as inapplicable as discovery may be in the criminal context, there is little doubt that the current trend is the expansion of that which is discoverable by either side prior to a criminal trial. In fact, criminal discovery has developed into something more than a problem of procedure to be resolved by the individual jurisdictions in piecemeal fashion. In the framework of the prosecutor's duty to disclose evidence favorable to the defense, it has achieved constitutional proportions.
Walter H. Ohar,
Exploring the Limits of Brady v. Maryland: Criminal Discovery as a Due Process Right in Access to Police Investigations and State Crime Laboratories,
U. Rich. L. Rev.
Available at: http://scholarship.richmond.edu/lawreview/vol15/iss1/8