Texas courts recognize a constitutional right of access to voir dire proceedings, and only permit closure when narrowly tailored to protect competing interests of higher value. See Woods v. State, 383 S.W.3d 775, 779 (Tex. App.—Houston [1st Dist.] 2012, pet. ref’d) (quoting Press-Enterprise Co. v. Superior Court of Cal., 464 U.S. 501, 510 (1984)); In re A.J.S., 442 S.W.3d 562, 566–67 (Tex. App.—El Paso 2014, no pet.) (“The public trial right extends not only to the guilt-innocence phase of trial, but to voir dire as well.”); Houston Chronicle Publ’g Co. v. Crapitto, 907 S.W.2d 99, 103, 105 (Tex. App.—Houston [14th Dist.] 1995, orig. proceeding) (collecting United States Supreme Court cases on the issue and permitting court access to voir dire proceedings).
Jury deliberations are secret and closed to the public. State ex rel. Rosenthal v. Poe, 98 S.W.3d 194, 209 n.7 (Tex. Crim. App. 2003) (“[W]e do not allow the parties or the public to impeach that verdict with evidence of what occurred between the jurors in the sanctity of that jury deliberation room.”); Tex. Code Crim. Proc. Ann. art. 36.22.
The same is true for all grand jury proceedings. See San Antonio Express-News v. Roman, 861 S.W.2d 265, 267 n.1 (Tex. App.—San Antonio 1993, orig. proceeding); Tex. Code Crim. Proc. Ann. art. 20.011. Transcripts and testimony from grand jury proceedings must generally be kept secret, but may, under certain circumstances, be disclosed by a court. See Stern v. State ex rel. Ansel, 869 S.W.2d 614, 622 (Tex. App.—Houston [14th Dist.] 1994, writ denied). Further, grand jury testimony is discoverable under certain circumstances in civil cases. See Lesher v. Coyel, 435 S.W.3d 423, 430 n.3 (Tex. App.—Dallas 2014, pet. denied) (citing Euresti v. Valdez, 769 S.W.2d 575, 579 (Tex. App.—Corpus Christi 1989, no writ)).