An Interview With Judge Sharon Keller

On Sept. 25, 2007, Sharon Keller allegedly spoke the words that launched a thousand editorials: "The court closes at 5 p.m." According to lawyers for Michael Richard, that's what the presiding judge of the Court of Criminal Appeals said when she denied their request to file a last-minute appeal of his death sentence on the night he was to be executed.

Ever since, a glaring national spotlight has focused on the state's death row appeals process and, to a lesser extent, on its method of regulating judicial conduct. But despite the public furor, Keller has escaped any ...

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