Michael Morton http://kut.org en Ken Anderson to Serve 9 Days in Jail http://kut.org/post/ken-anderson-serve-9-days-jail <p>GEORGETOWN — Former Williamson County State District Judge Ken Anderson, who oversaw the wrongful murder conviction of Michael Morton as a prosecutor, was sentenced to nine days in jail on Friday and will surrender his law license as part of a deal to resolve criminal charges and a civil lawsuit.</p><div>&nbsp;</div><div>Anderson entered into a comprehensive settlement involving all matters before the court. Those include a charge of criminal contempt tied to an accusation of failing to disclose evidence during Morton's 1987 trial, and the State Bar of Texas’ disciplinary case against Anderson over prosecutorial misconduct allegations. Charges of tampering with evidence were also dropped as part of the settlement.</div><p> Fri, 08 Nov 2013 22:01:12 +0000 Alexa Ura, Texas Tribune 9145 at http://kut.org Ken Anderson to Serve 9 Days in Jail Judge Ken Anderson Resigns Amid Ethics Lawsuit http://kut.org/post/judge-ken-anderson-resigns-amid-ethics-lawsuit <p></p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-bottom: 1em; padding: 0px; line-height: 1.35; color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; font-size: 15px; ">Williamson County state district Judge Ken Anderson, who oversaw the wrongful murder conviction of Michael Morton in 1987, submitted a&nbsp;<a href="https://s3.amazonaws.com/static.texastribune.org/media/documents/Letter.pdf" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(0, 137, 144); ">letter</a>&nbsp;to Gov.&nbsp;<a data-tooltip="/directory/rick-perry/quicklook/" href="http://www.texastribune.org/directory/rick-perry/" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(0, 137, 144); " title="">Rick Perry</a>&nbsp;on Monday resigning his position effective immediately.</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-bottom: 1em; padding: 0px; line-height: 1.35; color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; font-size: 15px; ">Anderson is facing both civil and criminal court proceedings for his role in prosecuting Morton for the 1986 murder of his wife, Christine Morton. Attorneys for Morton allege that Anderson withheld critical evidence that pointed to Morton's innocence and that he lied to the judge about the existence of that evidence. Morton was sentenced to life in prison and spent nearly 25 years behind bars before DNA testing revealed that he was innocent and connected another man to his wife's killing. He was released from prison in 2011.</p><p> Tue, 24 Sep 2013 21:33:52 +0000 Brandi Grissom, Texas Tribune 8776 at http://kut.org Judge Ken Anderson Resigns Amid Ethics Lawsuit Michael Morton Act Signed Into Law http://kut.org/post/michael-morton-act-signed-law <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Governor Rick Perry signed the Michael Morton Act this afternoon, &nbsp;a law that will require prosecutors in criminal cases to share evidence with defense attorneys.</span></p><p>The Governor characterized Texas as a “law and order” state and that the new law will allow judicial process to be as transparent and as open as humanly possible when it goes into effect in September of this year.</p><p> Thu, 16 May 2013 22:45:30 +0000 Andrew Weber 7771 at http://kut.org Michael Morton Act Signed Into Law Michael Morton Act Heads for Gov. Perry's Desk http://kut.org/post/michael-morton-act-heads-gov-perrys-desk <p></p><p><strong>Update:</strong> The Texas House gave final passage to the bill on May 14, 2013, officially sending it to the desk of Gov. Rick Perry for his signature.</p><p><br><strong>Original version:</strong><br>The Texas House has voted to pass bills that would grant more rights to people when they’re suspected and even convicted of crimes. The votes took place on the 50th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court's <a href="http://www.fjc.gov/public/pdf.nsf/lookup/bradymat.pdf/$file/bradymat.pdf" target="_blank">Brady vs. Maryland</a> ruling, which established a suspect’s right to access evidence against him or her.&nbsp;</p><p><a href="http://www.innocenceproject.org/Content/Michael_Morton.php" target="_blank">Michael Morton</a> spent about 25 years behind bars, wrongfully convicted of murdering his wife.&nbsp;</p><p> Tue, 14 May 2013 12:25:18 +0000 Veronica Zaragovia 7721 at http://kut.org Michael Morton Act Heads for Gov. Perry's Desk Court of Inquiry Ends With Arrest Warrant for Anderson http://kut.org/post/court-inquiry-ends-arrest-warrant-anderson <p><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; font-size: 15px; line-height: 1.35; ">GEORGETOWN — A judge issued an arrest warrant for former Williamson County District Attorney Ken Anderson Friday, after finding probable cause to believe Anderson withheld critical evidence in Michael Morton's 1987 murder trial.&nbsp;</span></p><p>Judge Louis Sturns concluded his court of inquiry by charging Anderson, who is now a state district judge, with&nbsp;tampering with government records (a misdemeanor), tampering with physical evidence (a felony) and failing to comply with a judge's order to turn over such evidence, for which he could be held in “contempt of court.”</p><p> Fri, 19 Apr 2013 21:58:51 +0000 Maurice Chammah, Texas Tribune 7433 at http://kut.org Court of Inquiry Ends With Arrest Warrant for Anderson Dallas Exonerees Fight for Freedom for Others http://kut.org/post/dallas-exonerees-fight-freedom-others <p>You might be familiar with the case of <a href="http://kut.org/2012/03/exonerated-michael-morton-youre-supposed-to-forgive/">Michael Morton</a>. He's the Georgetown, Texas man who spent more than 20 years in prison for killing his wife. But he didn't do it. And it was DNA testing that eventually freed him.</p> Mon, 15 Apr 2013 10:00:00 +0000 Jennifer Stayton 7342 at http://kut.org Dallas Exonerees Fight for Freedom for Others Senate OKs 'Michael Morton Act' http://kut.org/post/senate-oks-michael-morton-act <p>The Texas Senate approved <a href="http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/BillLookup/History.aspx?LegSess=83R&amp;Bill=SB1611">SB 1611</a>&nbsp;today, also known as the Michael Morton Act.</p><p>The bill would give defense attorneys access to evidence held by prosecutors. Texas is one of a few states to not have a statewide open file policy, though district attorneys in some Texas counties have practiced a form of open file policy.</p><p> Fri, 12 Apr 2013 00:20:06 +0000 Marissa Barnett 7324 at http://kut.org Senate OKs 'Michael Morton Act' Huffman Wants 'Michael Morton Act' to Add Restriction http://kut.org/post/huffman-wants-michael-morton-act-add-restriction <p></p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-bottom: 1em; padding: 0px; line-height: 1.35; color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; font-size: 15.454545021057129px;">A fight over what defense lawyers can do with information about their clients in criminal cases after prosecutors turn it over to them is threatening to stymie the “Michael Morton Act.”&nbsp;</p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-bottom: 1em; padding: 0px; line-height: 1.35; color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; font-size: 15.454545021057129px;">The measure,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.texastribune.org/session/83R/bills/SB1611/" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(0, 137, 144);">Senate Bill 1611</a>&nbsp;by state Sens.&nbsp;<a data-tooltip="/directory/rodney-ellis/quicklook/" href="http://www.texastribune.org/directory/rodney-ellis/" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(0, 137, 144);">Rodney Ellis</a>, D-Houston, and&nbsp;<a data-tooltip="/directory/robert-duncan/quicklook/" href="http://www.texastribune.org/directory/robert-duncan/" style="box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(0, 137, 144);" title="">Robert Duncan</a>, R-Lubbock, would require prosecutors to turn over evidence to defense lawyers in criminal cases. Currently, prosecutors aren't required to provide evidence to defense lawyers unless ordered to by the court, though many Texas prosecutors have some form of open file policy.</p><p> Tue, 09 Apr 2013 15:55:50 +0000 Brandi Grissom, Texas Tribune 7277 at http://kut.org Huffman Wants 'Michael Morton Act' to Add Restriction Tears and Relief After Norwood Found Guilty http://kut.org/post/tears-and-relief-after-norwood-found-guilty <p></p><p></p><p>SAN ANGELO — Family members of Christine Morton and Debra Baker filled a Tom Green County courtroom with tearful hugs and relieved smiles on Wednesday after a jury found Mark Alan Norwood guilty of murder.</p><p>Norwood, 58, received an automatic life sentence after the jury decided he was guilty of the Aug. 13, 1986 killing of Christine Morton, who was beaten to death in her North Austin home.&nbsp;</p><p> Thu, 28 Mar 2013 16:00:11 +0000 Brandi Grissom, Texas Tribune 7121 at http://kut.org Tears and Relief After Norwood Found Guilty The Lead: Senate Bill Could Slash Number of Tx Abortion Facilities; Norwood & Hasan Trial Updates http://kut.org/post/lead-senate-bill-could-slash-number-tx-abortion-facilities-norwood-hasan-trial-updates <p></p><p>Good morning. After last night, Austin’s looking at decreasing rain chances as the morning goes on, lessening from as much as&nbsp;<a href="http://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php?CityName=Austin&amp;state=TX&amp;site=EWX&amp;textField1=30.267&amp;textField2=-97.743&amp;e=1">50 percent to just a slight chance</a>. Sorry, that means <a href="http://kutnews.org/post/rain-hail-over-central-texas-first-day-spring">no more hail</a>.&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Lead Story</strong>: The sponsor of a bill heard in a Texas Senate committee yesterday says the measure is about protecting the health of women who are getting abortions. But&nbsp;opponents say it will just make abortions harder to get, especially in rural areas.</p><p> Wed, 20 Mar 2013 13:59:00 +0000 KUT Staff 7014 at http://kut.org The Lead: Senate Bill Could Slash Number of Tx Abortion Facilities; Norwood & Hasan Trial Updates The Lead: Norwood Trial Update, Tx Construction Jobs Tops in U.S. http://kut.org/post/lead-norwood-trial-update-tx-construction-jobs-tops-us <p>Good morning! Austin’s in for another warm day, although not as hot as yesterday’s record highs: we can expect a high near 80 degrees and increasing cloud cover as the day continues, according to <a href="http://www.srh.noaa.gov/ewx/">the National Weather Service</a>.</p><p><strong>Lead Story</strong>: Jury selection began yesterday in the trial of a man accused of killing Michael Morton’s wife in 1986.Morton was the Austin man who <a href="http://kutnews.org/post/morton-released-east-texas-prison-after-25-years">spent almost 25 years prison</a> for his wife’s murder, before he was exonerated by DNA evidence in 2011.&nbsp;</p><p> Tue, 19 Mar 2013 13:53:28 +0000 KUT Staff 7000 at http://kut.org The Lead: Norwood Trial Update, Tx Construction Jobs Tops in U.S. The Lead: SXSW Ends, Norwood Trial Begins, TxDOT Detonates Marble Falls Bridge (Video) http://kut.org/post/lead-sxsw-ends-norwood-trial-begins-txdot-detonates-marble-falls-bridge-video <p>Good morning this post-spring break Monday. Austin’s expecting record high temperatures approaching 90 degrees today. The <a href="http://www.srh.noaa.gov/ewx/">National Weather Service says</a> those high temperature make for elevated fire conditions, so be careful.</p><p><strong>Lead Story</strong>: It’s one of the busiest days of the year at <a href="http://www.austintexas.gov/airport">Austin-Bergstrom International Airport</a>, as many visitors in town for South by Southwest head home.</p><p> Mon, 18 Mar 2013 14:00:34 +0000 KUT Staff 6983 at http://kut.org The Lead: SXSW Ends, Norwood Trial Begins, TxDOT Detonates Marble Falls Bridge (Video) Trial Switches Focus of Morton Case to Alleged Killer http://kut.org/post/trial-switches-focus-morton-case-alleged-killer <p>Mark Norwood, charged with the 1986 murder of Christine Morton — a crime that her husband, <a href="http://www.texastribune.org/tribpedia/michael-morton/">Michael Morton</a>, was wrongfully convicted of — will go on trial Monday in San Angelo.</p><p>Michael Morton had spent nearly a quarter-century behind bars before DNA testing exonerated him in 2011 and connected Norwood, a 58-year-old former Bastrop dishwasher, to the beating death.</p><p> Mon, 18 Mar 2013 12:12:00 +0000 Brandi Grissom, Texas Tribune 6981 at http://kut.org Trial Switches Focus of Morton Case to Alleged Killer Texas Senate Formally Apologizes to Michael Morton http://kut.org/post/texas-senate-formally-apologizes-michael-morton <p>Two years ago he was in prison serving a life sentence for murdering his wife. Today, <a href="http://kutnews.org/term/michael-morton">Michael Morton</a> received an apology for that wrongful conviction on the floor of the Texas Senate.</p><p>“I want to take this opportunity to give you a collective apology from the members sitting before you today,” said state Sen. <a href="http://www.whitmire.senate.state.tx.us/">John Whitmire</a>, D-Houston, the Senate Criminal Justice Committee. “The system failed you. We apologize and we thank you for being here and watching you for the remainder of your life make such a difference in others lives.”</p><p> Wed, 13 Mar 2013 22:01:00 +0000 Nathan Bernier 6946 at http://kut.org Texas Senate Formally Apologizes to Michael Morton Whitmire Bill Aims to Improve Prosecutor Accountability http://kut.org/post/whitmire-bill-aims-improve-prosecutor-accountability <p><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; font-size: 15px; line-height: 1.35;">Taking a lesson from the high-profile exoneration of&nbsp;</span><a href="http://www.texastribune.org/tribpedia/michael-morton/" style="font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; font-size: 15px; line-height: 1.35; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(0, 137, 144);">Michael Morton</a><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; font-size: 15px; line-height: 1.35;">, state Sen.&nbsp;</span><a data-tooltip="/directory/john-whitmire/quicklook/" href="http://www.texastribune.org/directory/john-whitmire/" style="font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; font-size: 15px; line-height: 1.35; box-sizing: border-box; color: rgb(0, 137, 144);" title="">John Whitmire</a><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; font-size: 15px; line-height: 1.35;">, D-Houston, filed a bill Tuesday that aims to ensure more accountability for prosecutors who are accused of withholding evidence that results in a wrongful conviction.</span></p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-bottom: 1em; padding: 0px; line-height: 1.35; color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; font-size: 15px;">"It's an effort to have accountability and transparency and to make the system more fair," Whitmire said, adding that he believes the measure will pass.</p><p> Tue, 26 Feb 2013 19:08:27 +0000 Brandi Grissom, Texas Tribune 6748 at http://kut.org Whitmire Bill Aims to Improve Prosecutor Accountability The Lead: Anderson Inquiry Ends, Texas SEAL Chris Kyle Eulogized http://kut.org/post/lead-anderson-inquiry-ends-texas-seal-chris-kyle-eulogized <p>Good morning. The&nbsp;<a href="http://www.srh.noaa.gov/ewx/">National Weather Service</a>&nbsp;says&nbsp;Austin can expect continued chances for rain and highs in the 60s today.</p><p><strong>Lead Story</strong>: Former Williamson County district attorney Ken Anderson has denied any misconduct in the case of Michael Morton, the man who <a href="http://kutnews.org/post/26-years-later-exonerated-citizen-michael-morton-reflects">was wrongfully convicted of his wife’s murder</a> and spent 25 years in prison.</p><p>Anderson, now a judge in Georgetown, is facing allegations that as a prosecutor he hid evidence that would have proved Morton’s innocence.</p><p> Mon, 11 Feb 2013 15:27:13 +0000 KUT Staff 6541 at http://kut.org The Lead: Anderson Inquiry Ends, Texas SEAL Chris Kyle Eulogized Ken Anderson's Testimony Caps Dramatic Inquiry http://kut.org/post/ken-andersons-testimony-caps-dramatic-inquiry <p><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; font-size: 1.5em; line-height: 1.35;">Defiant, angry and frustrated, former prosecutor Ken Anderson took the stand on Friday to defend himself, ending a week of dramatic testimony in an usual court of inquiry that is examining whether the former district attorney committed criminal misconduct during the trial that led to the wrongful murder conviction of Michael Morton.</span></p><p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-bottom: 1em; padding: 0px; font-size: 1.5em; line-height: 1.35; color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif;">Morton was sentenced to life in prison in 1987 for his wife’s murder, and he spent nearly 25 years behind bars before DNA evidence led to his exoneration in 2011. Lawyers for the exoneree contend that Anderson deliberately withheld critical evidence that could have prevented Morton’s wrongful conviction. Anderson adamantly denied any wrongdoing, and in his often impassioned testimony criticized the court of inquiry.&nbsp;</p><p> Sat, 09 Feb 2013 14:09:36 +0000 Brandi Grissom, Texas Tribune 6537 at http://kut.org Ken Anderson's Testimony Caps Dramatic Inquiry The Lead: Morton Inquiry Winding Down; Gov. Perry Goes West http://kut.org/post/lead-morton-inquiry-winding-down-gov-perry-goes-west <p></p><p>Good morning. The&nbsp;<a href="http://www.srh.noaa.gov/ewx/">National Weather Service</a>&nbsp;says Austin will see sunny and mild weather today with a high approaching 70 degrees. A band of severe thunderstorms is expected to blow in Saturday night.</p><p><strong>Lead Story</strong>: In Georgetown, it’s day five of a court of inquiry seeking answers into the case of Michael Morton. Wrongly convicted for the murder of his wife, Morton <a href="http://kutnews.org/post/interview-exonerated-after-25-years-michael-morton-tells-his-story">spent 25 years behind bars</a> before he was cleared by DNA evidence.</p><p> Fri, 08 Feb 2013 15:15:48 +0000 KUT Staff 6519 at http://kut.org The Lead: Morton Inquiry Winding Down; Gov. Perry Goes West The Lead: Austin Road Deaths Mount; WilCo Inquiry Continues http://kut.org/post/lead-austin-road-deaths-mount-wilco-inquiry-continues <p></p><p>Good morning. The&nbsp;<a href="http://www.srh.noaa.gov/ewx/">National Weather Service</a>&nbsp;says sunny and warm weather is the order of the day, with expected highs in the mid-70s.</p><p><strong>Lead Story</strong>: Ten people have died in traffic accidents in Austin so far this year. That’s twice as many as this time last year.</p><p>The city has launched a survey as part of an effort to reverse that trend, looking for feedback on how to make Austin safer for cyclists, drivers, and pedestrians. You can <a href="http://austintexas.gov/article/city-austin-embarks-safe-walk-safe-bike-study-develop-campaign-drivers-cyclists-and-pedestrians">find the survey on the city’s website</a>.</p><p> Tue, 05 Feb 2013 15:30:38 +0000 Wells Dunbar 6469 at http://kut.org The Lead: Austin Road Deaths Mount; WilCo Inquiry Continues The Lead: Ruling Coming in Texas School Finance Trial, Inquiry Begins in Morton Prosecution http://kut.org/post/lead-ruling-coming-texas-school-finance-trial-inquiry-begins-morton-prosecution <p>Good morning. The&nbsp;<a href="http://www.srh.noaa.gov/ewx/">National Weather Service</a>&nbsp;says Austin’s in for another day of slightly-warmer-than-average temperatures today, with light sprinkles this morning.</p><p><strong>Lead Story</strong>: A ruling is set be issued to today on whether the appropriation of state school funds is constitutional.</p><p><a href="http://kutnews.org/post/texas-schools-head-court-finance-lawsuit">Over 600 Texas school districts sued the state</a> after lawmakers slashed public funding and grant programs by $5.4 billion dollars in 2011.</p><p> Mon, 04 Feb 2013 15:02:15 +0000 KUT Staff 6449 at http://kut.org The Lead: Ruling Coming in Texas School Finance Trial, Inquiry Begins in Morton Prosecution