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Charlton Heston rant rattled judge, court tosses murder case

Associated Press logo Associated Press 3/2/2017

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A Philadelphia judge's clash with the late actor Charlton Heston has indirectly led to a U.S. appeals court decision to overturn a murder conviction.

The victim's family had created a blog during the 1998 case that quoted Heston calling Judge Lisa Richette (rick-ET') soft on crime.

Heston had called the late judge "Let 'em Loose Lisa" during a National Rifle Association speech in Philadelphia.

The blog prompted Richette to call the victim's family to her chambers. She suggested they'd slandered her but promised to try the case fairly.

She then found defendant Paul McKernan guilty and sent him to prison for life.

The U.S. court says the meeting was inappropriate and McKernan's lawyer was ineffective. It threw out the conviction last week.

McKernan will go free unless prosecutors retry him.

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