In the wake of Tuesday’s resignation from Williamson County District Judge Ken Anderson,
attorneys, Barry Scheck and Nina Morrison at the Innocence Project in New York, New York, and John Raley with Raley & Bowick in Houston, Texas, released the following statement:
Judge Ken Anderson’s resignation is long overdue and we have little doubt that the voters would not have reelected him in next year’s contest. He still admits no wrongdoing and shows no real remorse, claiming it was “the system,” not [him], that failed Michael Morton.
We look forward to an adjudication of the pending disciplinary action brought by the state bar as well as the pending criminal charges. Judge Anderson deserves a fair trial but if there are findings against him in either proceeding, we would expect that appropriate penalties be imposed.
After Morton was exonerated in 2011 for the 1987 murder of his wife, Christine, the Innocence Project filed a report calling for a Court of Inquiry to investigate whether Anderson engaged in criminal conduct by failing to turn over evidence to the trial court that pointed to Morton’s innocence. The state convened a Court of Inquiry earlier this year that was presided over by Judge Louis Sturns. In April, he issued an opinion finding that there was probable cause to believe that Anderson was guilty of criminal contempt and concealment of official records for deliberately disobeying the trial judge’s directives to disclose exculpatory evidence and ordered Anderson’s arrest in the courtroom. Anderson was charged with those crimes, and a trial was set for later this year. The state bar also brought ethical charges against Anderson. A trial on those charges is scheduled to begin on Monday.