Vt. R. Crim. P. 12

As amended through November 2, 2020
Rule 12 - Pleadings and Motions Before Trial; Status Conference
(a) Pleadings and Motions. The pleadings in criminal proceedings are the indictment and the information, and the pleas of not guilty, guilty and nolo contendere.
(b) Pretrial Motions. Any defense, objection, or request which is capable of determination without the trial of the general issue may be raised before trial by motion.
(1)In General. Rule 47 applies to a pretrial motion.
(2)Motions That May Be Made at Any Time. The following motions alleging defects in the indictment or information may be made at any time while the case is pending:
(A) a claim that the indictment or information fails to invoke the court's jurisdiction; or
(B) a claim that the indictment or information fails to state an offense.
(3)Motions That Must Be Made Before Trial. The following defenses, objections, and requests must be raised by motion before trial if the basis for the motion then exists and the motion can be determined without a trial on the merits:
(A) a motion alleging a defect in instituting the prosecution;
(B) a defect in the indictment or information, including:
(i) joining two or more offenses in the same count (duplicity);
(ii) charging the same offense in more than one count (multiplicity);
(iii) lack of specificity; and
(iv) improper joinder.

(C} suppression of evidence;

(D) matters related to depositions or discovery under Rules 15, 16, 16.1 or
(E) severance of offenses or defendants under Rule 14; and
(F) a motion to dismiss under subdivision (d).
(c) Setting of Deadlines; Consequences of Untimely Motions.
(1)Setting Deadlines. The court may, at the arraignment or as soon afterward as practicable, set deadlines for the parties to make pretrial motions, to conduct and complete discovery, and for disclosures under Rule 12.1. If no deadline for making motions is set, the deadline is 60 days after arraignment.
(2)Consequences of an Untimely Motion under Rule 12(b)(3). Subject to constitutional limitations, if a party does not meet the deadline-or any extension the court provides-for making a Rule 12(b)(3) motion, the motion is untimely. In such a case, for good cause the court may grant relief.
(d) Motion To Dismiss for Lack of Prima Facie Case.
(1)Motion. The defendant may move for dismissal of the indictment or information on the ground that the prosecution is unable to make out a prima facie case against him. The motion must specify the factual elements of the offense which the defendant contends cannot be proven at trial.
(2)Hearing and Determination. If the prosecution does not establish by affidavits, depositions, sworn oral testimony, or other admissible evidence that it has substantial, admissible evidence as to the elements of the offense challenged by the defendant's motion, or a lesser included offense, sufficient to prevent the grant of a motion for judgment of acquittal at the trial, the court must dismiss the indictment or information without prejudice and discharge the defendant. If the prosecution has sufficient evidence of a lesser included offense, the court must enter an order dismissing the offense charged and specifying the lesser included offense remaining for trial. The prosecution or the defendant may request a hearing. The court may determine the motion without hearing as long as both the state and defense have been provided an opportunity to submit affidavits, depositions, or other sworn admissible evidence in written or recorded form. Any question of law determinative of the issues raised by the defendant's motion that could be raised by motion under subdivision (b) of this rule must be determined under this subdivision.
(3)Form of Affidavits. Affidavits offered by either party must be made on personal knowledge, must set forth such facts as would be admissible in evidence, and must show affirmatively that the affiant is competent to testify. Sworn or certified copies of all papers or parts thereof referred to in the affidavits or offered independently must be filed and served with the motion.
(e) Status Conference and Discovery Orders. The court may hold such status and discovery conferences and enter such orders as may be necessary in order to ensure the orderly progression of the proceedings.
(f) Ruling on a Motion. The court must decide every pretrial motion before trial unless it finds good cause to defer a ruling.
(g) Recording the Proceedings. All proceedings at a hearing under subdivisions Cb), Cd) or Ce), including any findings of fact and conclusions oflaw made orally by the court, must be recorded by a court reporter or a suitable recording device.
(h) Effect of Determination of Motion. If the court grants a motion based on a defect in the institution of the prosecution or in the indictment or information, it may also order that the defendant be held in custody or that the conditions of the defendant's release be continued for a specified time pending the filing of a new indictment or information. Nothing in this rule will be deemed to affect the provisions of any statute relating to periods of limitations.

Vt. R. Crim. P. 12

Amended Dec. 19, 1973, eff. Jan. 1, 1974; March 17, 1977, eff. May 1, 1977; Dec. 8, 1981, eff. March 1, 1982; Oct. 31, 1983, eff. Feb. 1, 1984; Dec. 18, 2007, eff. Feb. 19, 2008; Dec. 11, 2014, eff. Feb. 13, 2015.