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Name: Eulloqui v. Superior Court
Case #: B218578
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 1
Opinion Date: 02/04/2010

A denial of a post-conviction discovery motion for a police officer’s personnel records made in a habeas corpus proceeding is subject to due process review. Appellant was convicted of murder in 1999 and sentenced to life in prison plus 35 years. He exhausted his state direct appeal remedy, pursued various unsuccessful habeas petitions in state and federal courts and then brought a Pitchess motion for discovery of an investigating detective’s file, alleging that a witness was a paid informant but that the detective represented that he was not. The trial court denied the motion, without reviewing the file, finding that the applicable time period predated the allegation of misconduct. The appellate court ruled that under Brady v. Maryland (1963) 373 U.S. 83 [suppression of evidence favorable to an accused upon request violated the due process clause, U.S. Const., 14th Amend., where the evidence was material to guilt or punishment], appellant had made an adequate showing to require the trial court to review the detective’s personnel file but that under Pitchess v. Superior Court (1974) 11 Cal.3d 531, he failed to set forth a specific plausible scenario of misconduct. The matter was remanded with direction to the court to conduct an in camera review as to those items covered by the Brady decision.