Why does a case take so long to go to trial?

Joe Bodiford’s commentary on a 3-year old DUI case pending in Tampa, in a TBO.com article.

Joseph Bodiford, an adjunct professor at Stetson University’s College of Law, said it is unusual but not unheard of for DUI manslaughter cases to take years to go to trial.

“The vast majority of DUI manslaughter cases has more forensic evidence than murder cases,” said Bodiford, who is also a criminal defense lawyer in Tampa. “There’s layer after layer. Even one deposition leads into an investigation and then that leads to finding an expert witness. It’s complex.”

. . .
Bodiford, the Stetson law professor, said it is not surprising both the prosecution and defense have so much groundwork to complete before Moye’s case goes to trial.

“Most likely they have a ton of expert witnesses,” he said. “Then you have the blood draw, and if part of the defense is some kind of vehicle malfunction, that has to be looked at, too. When vehicles are involved, there’s always some issue that comes out.”

. . .

Bodiford said he feels the lawyers and judge are making sure all angles are covered.

“In complex forensic cases such as this, judges want to take time to do it right and do it once,” Bodiford said. “That outweighs the push for judgment. The vox populi doesn’t want to hear it, but the defense has the right to a fair trial. It’s unpopular because two people are dead and there’s a guy who hasn’t been brought to trial for three years.”

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