Saturday, November 17, 2007

Keller's court remains open after 5 PM

Today, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals stayed open late accepting letters from the public urging Judge Sharon Keller to resign. On Sept 25, Keller closed the court sharply at 5, saying "We close at five", but today the court stayed open for business past 5 accepting letters urging Keller to resign. This shows how arbitrary the decision was on Sept 25 to close exactly at five. The court stayed open past 5 for a few minutes today with no problem, they could have easily stayed open an extra 20 minutes on Sept 25 to accept an appeal from a man set for execution at 6 pm that day. The protest was covered by Fox 7 and KeyeTV. Fort Worth Star-Telegram also has an article.

"Justice does not close at 5 p.m.," said Laura Brady, a protester from Austin. "Judge Keller has got to understand that."

Keller, who has served on the appeals court since 1995 and has been the presiding judge since 2001, has not responded to calls that she be sanctioned by the State Commission on Judicial Conduct. But last week she implemented a policy of allowing after-hours emergency appeals to be filed electronically.

That action came too late to satisfy Scott Cobb, the organizer of the protest that began outside the Texas Supreme Court building.

"We think she abdicated her responsibility as a judge," Cobb said. "She ought to remove herself from office, or the Commission on Judicial Conduct should remove her.
Please take a moment to send an email to Sharon Keller telling her to resign. Your email will also be sent to Governor Perry, members of the Texas Legislature and the other judges on the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals.

Click here to send Sharon Keller an email telling her to resign.

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