Request to Conduct An Independent Blood Test In a Criminal Trial

In Prince v. Superior Court (1992) the Supreme Court found the trial court did not err in denying a defense request to conduct an independent blood test which would have consumed the entire sample. At oral argument both parties argued the equally divided swab can produce five tests for each party." (Prince v. Superior Court, supra, 8 Cal. App. 4th at p. 1179.) Thus, the holding in Prince was merely that, after a noticed motion and a complete hearing, each side may do its own scientific test where a sample is sufficiently divisible and the defense should be able to conduct its test independent of observation by the district attorney in that situation. Oziel v. Superior Court (1990) 223 Cal. App. 3d 1284 273 Cal. Rptr. 196, according to the alternate defender, stands for the proposition that evidence collected by law enforcement "is held for the court." However, Oziel only says this: "But even as to property not yet offered or received in evidence we think that judicial control still exists." (Id. at p. 1293, quoting Gershenhorn v. Superior Court (1964) 227 Cal. App. 2d 361, 366 38 Cal. Rptr. 576.) Sure it does. An unending line of cases, Brady for example, permits the court to regulate the discovery of evidence. The prosecution's responsibility for the evidence does not translate to exclusive use, nor can the court's power to referee discovery disputes mutate into permitting ex parte "investigation" in a police (third party) evidence locker.