MOBILE, Ala. (AP) — An Alabama judge has scheduled a hearing Nov. 17 for a woman who was sentenced to death for killing her two stepchildren.
Mobile County Circuit Judge Rick Stout set the date Wednesday after lawyers for Heather Leavell Keaton tried to convince him to hold an entirely new sentencing hearing for the woman, WPMI-TV reported.
A state appellate court earlier this month ordered a hearing just to let Keaton speak for herself. Her lawyers asked for leniency based on her good behavior in jail and factors including her blindness and COVID-19.
Keaton, 31, was convicted of capital murder in the death of 3-year-old Chase DeBlase and manslaughter in the death of 4-year-old Natalie DeBlase. Prosecutors say the children were tortured, gagged and choked to death. Their bodies were found in remote areas near Citronelle, Alabama and Vancleave, Mississippi.
The children’s father, John DeBlase, also was sentenced to death.