Category: Judicial misconduct

Anthony Graves freed after eighteen years in prison

Anthony Graves

By Alan Bean

Anthony Graves is back in the free world after eighteen years of hell. 

Charles Sebesta, the prosecutor who sent Graves to death row, still thinks he nailed the right man.  If you asked the Texas Rangers who conducted the “investigation” they would probably agree with Sebesta.
According to the state’s theory of the crime, Graves teamed up with Robert Earl Carter to brutally murder Bobbie Davis, 45; her 16-year-old daughter, Nicole; and four of Davis’ grandchildren in August of 1992.  The victims died from hammer blows, repeated stabbings, and bullet wounds.   Their house was then torched in a clumsy attempt to conceal evidence.  It was the most brutal crime in the history of Burleson County. (more…)

Legal nightmare ends for the Richardson family

Mark and Vergil Richardson

District Judge Robert Mohoney has dropped all criminal charges against Mark Richardson, Vergil Richardson, Jermichole Richardson and Xavier Richardson, bringing a three-year legal nightmare to an end. 

This ruling comes as no surprise.  Once Judge John McCraw Jr. forced the presiding judge, John Miller, to recuse himself, the outcome was virtually automatic.  Judge Mahoney was appointed to replace Miller and it didn’t take him long to make the only sensible call available to him.

The big surprise in this case is that charges were filed against these defendants in the first place.  No one has ever accused the Texas Attorney General’s office of being soft on drug crime, but when Nicole Habersang reviewed the facts she knew what she had to do.  That’s when things got really strange.   When Ms. habersang filed a motion requesting that charges against all but one defendant be dropped, Judge Miller refused to cooperate.  (more…)

Texas Judge gets off on a technicality

This story probably won’t get the attention it deserves.  It’s too complicated.  Here’s the simple version:
Michael Wayne Richard was executed by lethal injection on Sept. 27, 2007.  Earlier that day, the federal Supreme Court agreed to hear a case involving the claim that Kentucky’s three-drug lethal injection protocol constituted cruel and unusual punishment.  Since Texas uses a similar method of execution, Michael Richard’s attorneys wanted to file a federal writ asking that their client’s execution be stayed until the Kentucky case was decided.  A stay would have allowed Richard’s attorneys  to make an “Atkins claim” or mental retardation defense.  Unfortunately, they couldn’t file at the federal level until all state remedies had been exhausted.  They had two complicated writs to write and only a few hours to get the work done.  That’s where Texas Judge Sharon Keller enters the picture. (more…)