The Keller trial, Day One

If you want a detailed blow-by-blow description of the trial of Court of Criminal Appeals Justice Sharon Keller, go to the Statesman’s Focal Point blog, which has been liveblogging the procedure. Here are links to various entries:

Opening statement by the prosecution.

Opening statement by the defense.

Possible bombshell from Ed Marty, the Court of Criminal Appeals general counsel on the day in question.

Phone calls to the court.

To me, the most interesting bit in all this comes from this Chron story. It has to do with what Ed Marty may or may not have said to CCA Justice Cheryl Johnson:

[Keller’s] defense attorneys claimed that Judge Cheryl Johnson, the judge on duty the night of Richard’s execution, knew Richard’s attorneys were trying to file an appeal. According to Babcock, court general counsel Ed Marty has said in a deposition that he told Johnson that Richard’s attorneys were running late.

Johnson, the first witness called, denied that conversation took place.

“If I had known that they asked for more time, I would have granted it,” Johnson said “It’s an execution.”

On cross-examination, Babcock produced a a floor plan of the court hallway and a tape measure to determine where Marty was standing about 5:30 p.m. that night. Johnson said she and other judges were talking about their surprise that no appeal had been filed while Marty stood a few feet away.

Babcock said it was during that conversation that Marty mentioned Richard’s lawyers had tried filing appeal. Johnson said that didn’t happen.

“So (Marty) stood there for five minutes in a hallway with no bathrooms, nothing to do, not trying to join your conversation. Just standing there loitering. Is that correct?” Babcock asked.

“Yes,” Johnson replied.

I’m thinking that whatever happens to Keller, she’s not going to be on Johnson’s Christmas card list any more. Grits has more.

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