© 2021 WKSU
Public Radio News for Northeast Ohio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Government & Politics

U.S. Supreme Court is Expected to Decide Next Week Whether to Hear Ohio Man's Appeal

Photo of Charles Keith
M.L. Schultze
WKSU public radio
Charles Keith says his brother's case has been fraught with questions since it was rushed to trial 24 years ago.

A Canton native who narrowly escaped execution is expected to find out next week if the U.S. Supreme Court will consider the appeal of his conviction. WKSU’s M.L. Schultze has more on the case of Kevin Keith, who’s insisted on his innocence for more than two decades.

Keith was convicted in 1994 of killing three people and wounding three others -- including small children – in a small town in central Ohio. The trial occurred within three months of the killings, and he was sentenced to death. Questions about changing eyewitness accounts led then-Gov. Ted Strickland to commute Keith’s sentence to life in prison in 2010. His older brother, Charles, says the rush to trial and errors by prosecutors and investigators mean he never should have been convicted in the first place.

“No one wants to admit they’re wrong. But when you’re talking about a person’s life, it’s about you doing the right thing, as if it were you or one of your loved ones.” 

The challenge being presented to the U.S. Supreme Court focuses on the work of G. Michelle Yezzo, a forensics analyst who linked tire tracks from the scene to Keith. Other forensics experts have said her analysis was faulty and she’s accused of skewing cases in favor of police and prosecutors.