House passes bill to let cops challenge ‘Brady list’ designations

'There’d be no change to the underlying obligation to disclose that.'

Florida police officers placed on a list of law enforcement officials alleged to have given untruthful testimony by prosecutors would get a chance to dispute that designation under a bill passed by the House.

The bill (HB 95) would ban police agencies from using the placement on the list, known as a “Brady list” after a U.S. Supreme Court case requiring prosecutors to disclose exculpatory evidence to defendants, as a reason to demote, suspend or fire an officer. The underlying behavior, though, that resulted in the placement on the list could still be used in employment decisions.

The vote was 93-17, with 15 Democrats joining Republicans in favor of the bill.

Under the bill, prosecutors must tell officers in writing when before they’re put on the Brady list and officers would have the right to challenge their inclusion. If the state attorney’s office opts to remove the officer, they must give written notice to his or her agency, as well as notify all parties in a pending criminal case involving the officer.

Also, an officer can petition the court to order a prosecutor’s office to remove their name if the state attorney doesn’t follow the procedures for removal. It would also allow state attorneys to remove an officer’s name from the list at any time.

Some Democrats expressed concern the bill would lead to defendants being uninformed when a potentially untrustworthy officer was giving testimony in their case.

Rep. Wyman Duggan, a Jacksonville Republican and sponsor of the bill, stressed that prosecutors would still be required to disclose to defense attorneys about an officer’s inclusion on the list.

“There’d be no change to the underlying obligation to disclose that,” Duggan said.

The Senate version of the bill (SB 618) has passed through two committees in that chamber by unanimous votes and has one more committee stop before making it to the floor.

Gray Rohrer

One comment

  • David Pakman

    April 13, 2023 at 9:16 pm

    It’s a far right police state. God and baby Jesus help us all. Even the religious whackos will not like the end results of all of this fascism. Next up… death penalty for drugs. It’s all fine and dandy until it’s someone from your family in the news.. exploited and made a spectacle out of by the right wing media.

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