By Nelson S.B. No. 163 77R1431 GWK-D A BILL TO BE ENTITLED 1-1 AN ACT 1-2 relating to the circumstances under which a witness in a criminal 1-3 case may be excluded from the courtroom. 1-4 BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS: 1-5 SECTION 1. Chapter 36, Code of Criminal Procedure, is 1-6 amended by adding Article 36.03 to read as follows: 1-7 Art. 36.03. INVOCATION OF RULE. (a) Notwithstanding Rule 1-8 614, Texas Rules of Evidence, a court at the request of a party may 1-9 order the exclusion of a witness who for the purposes of the 1-10 prosecution is a victim, close relative of a deceased victim, or 1-11 guardian of a victim only if the witness is to testify and the 1-12 court determines that the testimony of the witness would be 1-13 materially affected if the witness hears other testimony at the 1-14 trial. 1-15 (b) On the objection of the opposing party, the court may 1-16 require the party requesting exclusion of a witness under 1-17 Subsection (a) to make an offer of proof to justify the exclusion. 1-18 (c) Subsection (a) does not limit the authority of the court 1-19 on its own motion to exclude a witness or other person to maintain 1-20 decorum in the courtroom. 1-21 (d) In this article: 1-22 (1) "Close relative of a deceased victim" and 1-23 "guardian of a victim" have the meanings assigned by Article 56.01. 1-24 (2) "Victim" means a victim of any criminal offense. 2-1 SECTION 2. This Act takes effect September 1, 2001.