Ken Anderson Case Study

1179 Words5 Pages
In preparation for trial, Ken Anderson had immersed himself in the details of the case. The district attorney knew he was up against formidable opponents: both defense attorneys had impressive track records, and Allison had been one of Anderson’s own law professors. Addressing the five-man, seven-woman jury that morning, the district attorney laid out the state’s theory of the case, arguing that on the night of his birthday, Michael had worked himself into a rage after Christine rejected his advances. “He had rented a videotape, a very sexually explicit videotape, and he viewed that sexually explicit videotape, and he got madder and madder,” Anderson said. “He got some sort of blunt object, probably a club, and he took that club and he went…show more content…
She was followed by Elizabeth Gee, who painted a portrait of an unhappy marriage. She told the jury of the Mortons’ frequent arguments and how she once heard Michael bark, “Bitch, go get me a beer.” She vividly described finding Christine’s body and how aloof Michael had been in the weeks that followed. When Anderson asked her to recount what he had done two days after Christine’s funeral, Elizabeth became emotional; she paused for a moment to collect herself, then looked at Michael. “Weed-Eating her marigolds,” she said, enunciating each word. Though much of Elizabeth’s testimony had felt “almost rehearsed,” jury foreman Mark Landrum told me, her disgust for Michael in that moment had been palpable. “From that moment on, I didn’t like Michael Morton,” Landrum said. “I’m assuming the entire jury felt that way too. Whether he was a murderer or not was still to be determined, but I knew that I did not like him.” Building on the idea that Michael hated his wife, Anderson also cast him as sexually deviant. Over the protests of the defense, Judge Lott allowed the district attorney to show jurors the first two minutes of Handful of Diamonds, the adult video that Michael had rented, under the pretext that it established his state of mind before the murder. Though tame by today’s standards, the film did not curry favor with a Williamson County jury. “I was repulsed,” Lou Bryan, a now-retired schoolteacher who served on the jury, told me. “I kept thinking, ‘What kind of person would watch this?’
Open Document