On Sept. 25, 2007, Michael Richard’s lawyers called the court clerk’s office to say they were running late in delivering the papers for his appeal. The Supreme Court had unexpectedly issued an order in another death penalty case that they believed provided grounds for putting off his execution. When the request to keep the office open reached Judge Keller, she insisted it would close promptly at 5 p.m. The appeal was not filed with her court, and Mr. Richard was executed hours later.
Judge Keller is now facing five counts of judicial misconduct and a possible recommendation that the state judicial system remove her from the bench.