2009 California Penal Code - Section 934-938.4 :: Article 3. Legal And Other Assistants For Grand JuriesPENAL CODE
934. (a) The grand jury may, at all times, request the advice of the court, or the judge thereof, the district attorney, the county counsel, or the Attorney General. Unless advice is requested, the judge of the court, or county counsel as to civil matters, shall not be present during the sessions of the grand jury. (b) The Attorney General may grant or deny a request for advice from the grand jury. If the Attorney General grants a request for advice from the grand jury, the Attorney General shall fulfill that request within existing financial and staffing resources. 935. The district attorney of the county may at all times appear before the grand jury for the purpose of giving information or advice relative to any matter cognizable by the grand jury, and may interrogate witnesses before the grand jury whenever he thinks it necessary. When a charge against or involving the district attorney, or assistant district attorney, or deputy district attorney, or anyone employed by or connected with the office of the district attorney, is being investigated by the grand jury, such district attorney, or assistant district attorney, or deputy district attorney, or all or anyone or more of them, shall not be allowed to be present before such grand jury when such charge is being investigated, in an official capacity but only as a witness, and he shall only be present while a witness and after his appearance as such witness shall leave the place where the grand jury is holding its session. 936. When requested so to do by the grand jury of any county, the Attorney General may employ special counsel and special investigators, whose duty it shall be to investigate and present the evidence in such investigation to such grand jury. The services of such special counsel and special investigators shall be a county charge of such county. 936.5. (a) When requested to do so by the grand jury of any county, the presiding judge of the superior court may employ special counsel and special investigators, whose duty it shall be to investigate and present the evidence of the investigation to the grand jury. (b) Prior to the appointment, the presiding judge shall conduct an evidentiary hearing and find that a conflict exists that would prevent the local district attorney, the county counsel, and the Attorney General from performing such investigation. Notice of the hearing shall be given to each of them unless he or she is a subject of the investigation. The finding of the presiding judge may be appealed by the district attorney, the county counsel, or the Attorney General. The order shall be stayed pending the appeal made under this section. (c) The authority to appoint is contingent upon the certification by the auditor-comptroller of the county, that the grand jury has funds appropriated to it sufficient to compensate the special counsel and investigator for services rendered pursuant to the court order. In the absence of a certification the court has no authority to appoint. In the event the county board of supervisors or a member thereof is under investigation, the county has an obligation to appropriate the necessary funds. 936.7. (a) In a county of the eighth class, as defined by Sections 28020 and 28029 of the Government Code, upon a request by the grand jury, the presiding judge of the superior court may retain, in the name of the county, a special counsel to the grand jury. The request shall be presented to the presiding judge in camera, by an affidavit, executed by the foreperson of the grand jury, which specifies the reason for the request and the nature of the services sought, and which certifies that the appointment of the special counsel is reasonably necessary to aid the work of the grand jury. The affidavit shall be confidential and its contents may not be made public except by order of the presiding judge upon a showing of good cause. The special counsel shall be selected by the presiding judge following submission of the name of the nominee to the board of supervisors for comment. The special counsel shall be retained under a contract executed by the presiding judge in the name of the county. The contract shall contain the following terms: (1) The types of legal services to be rendered to the grand jury; provided, (i) that the special counsel's duties shall not include any legal advisory, investigative, or prosecutorial service which by statute is vested within the powers of the district attorney, and (ii) that the special counsel may not perform any investigative or prosecutorial service whatsoever except upon advance written approval by the presiding judge which specifies the number of hours of these services, the hourly rate therefor, and the subject matter of the inquiry. (2) The hourly rate of compensation of the special counsel for legal advisory services delivered, together with a maximum contract amount payable for all services rendered under the contract during the term thereof, and all service authorizations issued pursuant thereto. (3) That the contract may be canceled in advance of the expiration of its term by the presiding judge pursuant to service upon the special counsel of 10 days' advance written notice. (b) The maximum contract amount shall be determined by the board of supervisors and included in the grand jury's annual operational budget. The maximum amount shall be subject to increase by the presiding judge through contract amendment during the term thereof, subject to and in compliance with the procedure prescribed by Section 914.5. (c) The contract shall constitute a public record and shall be subject to public inspection and copying pursuant to the provisions of the California Public Records Act (Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 6250) of Division 7 of Title 1 of the Government Code). However, at the sole discretion of the board of supervisors, any or all of the following steps may be taken: (1) The nomination by the presiding judge, and any or all actions by the board of supervisors in commenting upon the nominee and the comments, may be made confidential. (2) The deliberations and actions may be undertaken in meetings from which the public is excluded, and the communication containing comments may constitute a confidential record which is not subject to public inspection or copying except at the sole discretion of the board of supervisors. Moreover, any written authorization by the presiding judge pursuant to paragraph (1) of subdivision (a) shall constitute a confidential record which is not subject to public inspection or copying except in connection with a dispute concerning compensation for services rendered. 937. The grand jury or district attorney may require by subpoena the attendance of any person before the grand jury as interpreter. While his services are necessary, such interpreter may be present at the examination of witnesses before the grand jury. The compensation for services of such interpreter constitutes a charge against the county, and shall be fixed by the grand jury. 938. (a) Whenever criminal causes are being investigated before the grand jury, it shall appoint a competent stenographic reporter. He shall be sworn and shall report in shorthand the testimony given in such causes and shall transcribe the shorthand in all cases where an indictment is returned or accusation presented. (b) At the request of the grand jury, the reporter shall also prepare transcripts of any testimony reported during any session of the immediately preceding grand jury. 938.1. (a) If an indictment has been found or accusation presented against a defendant, such stenographic reporter shall certify and deliver to the clerk of the superior court in the county an original transcription of the reporter's shorthand notes and a copy thereof and as many additional copies as there are defendants, other than fictitious defendants, regardless of the number of charges or fictitious defendants included in the same investigation. The reporter shall complete the certification and delivery within 10 days after the indictment has been found or the accusation presented unless the court for good cause makes an order extending the time. The time shall not be extended more than 20 days. The clerk shall file the original of the transcript, deliver a copy of the transcript to the district attorney immediately upon receipt thereof and deliver a copy of such transcript to each such defendant or the defendant's attorney. If the copy of the testimony is not served as provided in this section, the court shall on motion of the defendant continue the trial to such time as may be necessary to secure to the defendant receipt of a copy of such testimony 10 days before such trial. If several criminal charges are investigated against a defendant on one investigation and thereafter separate indictments are returned or accusations presented upon said several charges, the delivery to such defendant or the defendant's attorney of one copy of the transcript of such investigation shall be a compliance with this section as to all of such indictments or accusations. (b) The transcript shall not be open to the public until 10 days after its delivery to the defendant or the defendant's attorney. Thereafter the transcript shall be open to the public unless the court orders otherwise on its own motion or on motion of a party pending a determination as to whether all or part of the transcript should be sealed. If the court determines that there is a reasonable likelihood that making all or any part of the transcript public may prejudice a defendant's right to a fair and impartial trial, that part of the transcript shall be sealed until the defendant's trial has been completed. 938.2. (a) For preparing any transcript in any case pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 938.1, the stenographic reporter shall draw no salary or fees from the county for preparing such transcript in any case until all such transcripts of testimony in such case so taken by him are written up and delivered. Before making the order for payment to the reporter, the judge of the superior court shall require the reporter to show by affidavit or otherwise that he has written up and delivered all testimony taken by him, in accordance with subdivision (a) of Section 938 and Section 938.1. (b) Before making the order for payment to a reporter who has prepared transcripts pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 938, the judge of the superior court shall require the reporter to show by affidavit or otherwise that he has written up and delivered all testimony requested of him in accordance with that sudivision. 938.3. The services of the stenographic reporter shall constitute a charge against the county, and the stenographic reporter shall be compensated for reporting and transcribing at the same rates as prescribed in Sections 69947 to 69954, inclusive, of the Government Code, to be paid out of the county treasury on a warrant of the county auditor when ordered by the judge of the superior court. 938.4. The superior court shall arrange for a suitable meeting room and other support as the court determines is necessary for the grand jury. Any costs incurred by the court as a result of this section shall be absorbed by the court or the county from existing resources.
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