2014 Georgia Code
Title 24 - EVIDENCE
Chapter 13 - SECURING ATTENDANCE OF WITNESSES AND PRODUCTION AND PRESERVATION OF EVIDENCE
Article 6 - DEPOSITIONS TO PRESERVE TESTIMONY IN CRIMINAL PROCEEDINGS
§ 24-13-130 - When deposition to preserve testimony in criminal proceedings may be taken

GA Code § 24-13-130 (2014) What's This?

(a) (1) At any time after an accused has been charged with an offense against the laws of this state or an ordinance of any political subdivision or authority thereof, upon motion of the state or the accused, the court having jurisdiction to try the offense charged may, after notice to the parties, order that the testimony of a prospective material witness of a party be taken by deposition and that any designated evidence not privileged be produced at the same time and place.

(2) At any time after an accused has been charged with an offense of child molestation, aggravated child molestation, or physical or sexual abuse of a child, upon motion of the state or the accused, the court having jurisdiction to try the offense charged may, after notice to the parties, order that the testimony of any physician whose testimony is relevant to such charge be taken by deposition and that any designated evidence not privileged be produced at the same time and place.

(b) The court shall not order the taking of the witness's testimony, except as provided in paragraph (2) of subsection (a) of this Code section, unless it appears to the satisfaction of the court that the testimony of the witness is material to the proceeding and the witness:

(1) Is in imminent danger of death or great bodily harm;

(2) Has been threatened with death or great bodily harm because of the witness's status as a potential witness in a criminal trial or proceeding;

(3) Is about to leave this state, and there are reasonable grounds to believe that such witness will be unable to attend a criminal trial or proceeding;

(4) Is so sick or infirm as to afford reasonable grounds to believe that such witness will be unable to testify as a witness at a criminal trial or proceeding;

(5) Is being detained as a material witness, and there are reasonable grounds to believe that the witness will flee if released from detention; or

(6) Is 72 years of age or older.

(c) A motion to take a deposition of a material witness, or a physician as provided in paragraph (2) of subsection (a) of this Code section, shall be verified and shall state:

(1) The nature of the offense charged;

(2) The status of the criminal proceedings;

(3) The name of the witness and an address in Georgia where the witness may be contacted unless, for good cause shown, the court allows an exception to this paragraph;

(4) That the testimony of the witness is material to the proceeding or that the witness is a physician as provided in paragraph (2) of subsection (a) of this Code section; and

(5) The basis for taking the deposition as provided in subsection (b) of this Code section.

(d) A motion to take a deposition shall be filed in the court having jurisdiction to try the accused for the offense charged; provided, however, that if the accused is charged with multiple offenses, only the court having jurisdiction to try the most serious charge against the accused shall have jurisdiction to hear and decide the motion to take a deposition.

(e) The party moving the court for an order pursuant to this Code section shall give not less than one day's notice of the hearing to the opposite party. A copy of the motion shall be sent to the opposing party or his or her counsel by any means which will reasonably ensure timely delivery, including transmission by facsimile or by digital or electronic means. A copy of the notice shall be attached to the motion and filed with the clerk of court.

(f) If the court is satisfied that the examination of the witness is authorized by law and necessary, the court shall enter an order setting a time period of not more than 30 days during which the deposition shall be taken.

(g) On motion of either party, the court may designate a judge who shall be available to rule on any objections to the interrogation of the witness or before whom the deposition shall be taken. The judge so designated may be a judge of any court of this state who is otherwise qualified to preside over the trial of criminal proceedings in the court having jurisdiction over the offense charged.

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