Problems continue to mount for Judge Sharon Keller, Chief Judge of the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals. She is already facing a serious ethics charge over her decision to order the Clerk’s Office not to remain open after hours to allow for a final death row appeal. Now, a new complaint has been filed against her for failing to report nearly $2 million in real estate assets. She is also facing an impeachment effort in the Texas legislature.
Judge Keller’s refused to keep court offices open past 5 p.m. on Sept. 25, 2007, to receive an appeal in the case of Michael Richard, a convicted rapist and murderer. Richard was then put to death that evening. Now, exans for Public Justice, filed new civil and criminal complaints accusing Keller of violating ethics laws by failing to disclose her assets in a series of sworn statements filed with the Texas Ethics Commission.
Her attorney insists that the failure was inadvertent. The Dallas Morning News reported Monday that she had not disclosed at least seven properties valued at $1.9 million.
In the meantime, Keller is asking the court to pay her attorney costs in defending against the ethics charges related to the death penalty case.
Keller’s omitted properties include two homes in the “Keller family compound,” a vacant commercial lot, and an occupied commercial property adjacent to Keller’s Drive-In. The Drive-in is a hamburger joint run by her dad, Jack Keller — better known as “Cactus Jack.”
For the full story, click here.