The US Supreme Court decision in Brady v. Maryland [373 U.S. 83 (1963)], and subsequent rulings [Giglio, Jencks, et al] have made it a duty of all Law Enforcement Organizations [LEOrgs] to:
- Provide to the Prosecution any exculpatory material that would have a reasonable possibility of altering the results in a trial, or could reasonably mitigate the sentencing of a defendant; and,
- Any material relevant to the credibility of government witnesses, including, but not limited to, police officers.
The United States Department of Justice has initiated a methodical approach called proactive disclosure in conjunction with the Open Government Directive. This Brady List platform allows Law Enforcement Organizations [LEOrg] to enter their own findings, in any number of cases, in direct compliance with Brady and the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA; 1967). The individual lists are then compiled automatically into a Brady List for the LEOrg's predominant Reporting Authority, usually a District Attorney or Prosecutor's Office. The Brady List(s) of the Reporting Authorities are then automatically compiled into an Administrative Brady List for the predominant Administrative Authority, usually a State's Attorney General (Department of Justice) and/or the State's Supreme Court (Judicial Council).