Tuesday, June 26, 2012



We are all former presidents of the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association. Some of us are Democrats. Some of us are Republicans. Some of us are Independents. We are united in our strong support for Keith Hampton’s bid to unseat Judge Sharon Keller as Presiding Judge of the Court of Criminal Appeals. Click here to help Keith’s campaign.

As you know, Judge Sharon Keller brought national embarrassment to the Texas judiciary and legal system when she so famously shut the courthouse doors at 5 p.m. to a death-sentenced inmate whose lawyers had meritorious claims which would have saved his life. Her quip reverberated throughout the state: “We close at 5,” she said.

For this supreme act of judicial recklessness, she was condemned by the State Commission on Judicial Conduct. She was also fined a record $100,000 by the Texas Ethics Commission for concealing her millions in assets when she asked taxpayers to pay for her defense. For a sitting judge, the record can’t get worse. It is time for her to go.

Please make a contribution to Keith’s campaign by clicking here. Whatever your area of practice or political affiliation, this campaign is crucial to the state and national reputation of our courts. This race is about restoring justice on our state’s highest criminal court. 
If you don’t know Keith, let us introduce you.
  • He has handled death penalty cases at every stage in state and federal court, including the United States Supreme Court (where he won). 
  • He has worked with lawmakers on criminal justice reforms, including DNA testing for inmates to prove their innocence, Veterans Courts to help wounded vets, life without parole as an option for Texas juries in death cases, assistance to the mentally disabled, among his many other accomplishments. 
  • He won the State Bar “Lawyer of the Year” Award in 2008, and won the Judicial Bar Poll this year
  • He has made the list of Texas Super Lawyers every year for the last ten years, something less than 1% of lawyers can say. 
  • He is a prolific writer, having authored or co-authored three books and four law journal articles. 
  • He has earned the respect of lawmakers of both parties, and was appointed to select committees and task forces by Governor George Bush and Supreme Court Justice John Cornyn. 
  • He is the only lawyer in Texas to win a death-sentence commutation from Governor Rick Perry. For more on his outstanding candidacy, go to his website at HamptonforJudge.com.
While Keith was earning the highest rating in ethical standards and legal skills by his peers, Judge Keller was being punished by the Texas Ethics Commission. While Keith was working to establish innocence clinics throughout Texas, Judge Keller was working to deny judicial relief to innocent people. The choice in this race could not be more clear. Please make a donation today, and let’s ensure Texas has a judiciary our profession can be proud of.
Betty Blackwell  l  Ed Mallett  l  Mark Daniel  l  Vincent Perini  l  Michael Heiskell
Scrappy Holmes  l  George Gilkerson  l  Rick Hagen  l  Bill Wischkaemper  l  Charlie Butts
David Bires  l  Ron Goranson  l  David Botsford  l  Dan Hurley  l  Kent Schaffer l Craig Jett
Gerry Morris l Bob Hinton l Randy Wilson l Bill Harris l Tim Evans l Cynthia Orr

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