MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — Heather Keaton, the 2010 convicted child killer was back in court on Wednesday in Mobile.
Keaton convicted of using anti-freeze to poison her husband’s two young children back in 2010, stood in court again on Wednesday. This came after the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals overturned the death penalty against Keaton earlier this month.
There were six motions discussed in court. These motions from the defense centered on taking the death penalty off the table for sentencing. Their main argument for this was focused on Keaton’s good behavior in jail for the past five years. The defense said they believe this should be considered when sentencing. The state argued that goes beyond the scope of what the Alabama Court of Appeals ruled and this notion should only be entered when Keaton is given the chance to speak at her sentencing.
Richard Debose, the grandfather of the two young children murdered was emotional leaving the courtroom after hearing the defense. He said, “Just because she is a goody too shoes in jail that her sentencing should be reduced, but the same effect has happened to us, for my wife and her dementia, to losing relatives, what difference does it make? Why should we turnaround and say it’s okay if you killed the kids.”
The defense went on to mention how Keaton has since gone blind and for the court to consider this and the impact her death would have on her family members and those with who she has grown a relationship with while behind bars, like other inmates.
District Attorney Ashley Rich was not able to comment since they are under a gag order in this case. She was in court today and made strong statements after the defense claimed they did not have good contact with their client due to COVID-19. The defense said since she is at Metro and they are located in Atlanta they do not have the means to have private conversations with Keaton to prepare her for her statement at sentencing. They mentioned moving her back to Tutwiller Prison so they have better access to her. D.A. Rich countered and told Judge Hambright he can call Metro Jail and make those confidential arrangements for the defense and Keaton.
There was also a discussion of live streaming the final sentencing by the defense. Once again, the State argued saying this cannot be done in a Captial Murder case.
The court set the new date for Keaton’s sentencing on November 17th at 9:30 A.M.
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