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Kim Kardashian is in Columbus today. Here’s why.

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Kim Kardashian attends the CFDA Fashion Awards at Casa Cipriani in November in New York City.

Kim Kardashian attends the CFDA Fashion Awards at Casa Cipriani in November in New York City.

Kim Kardashian is making a rare visit to Columbus today.

She’s here to participate in a panel discussion on the case of Kevin Keith, who was convicted in a triple slaying in Bucyrus in 1994. Three others were wounded.

Organized by Ohio State University’s chapter of the Ohio Innocence Project, the panel also will include officials from the death penalty department from the Office of the Ohio Public Defender, along with Lori Rothschild Ansaldi, a producer in Los Angeles who specializes in true-crime stories. She is making a documentary about Keith and his family.

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Here’s what you need to know about Kardashian’s visit.

Why exactly is Kim Kardashian in Columbus?

Kardashian first took an interest in Keith’s case in July 2019 and in October launched a podcast, The System, to focus on wrongful convictions. In the podcast, she explores explores Keith’s alibi and interviews a journalist, Keith’s brother, his attorney and others.

Who is Kevin Keith and what was he convicted for?

Keith grew up in Canton and is a former McKinley High School football star.

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He was convicted in 1995 for the slayings in what police called a revenge killing over drugs. The victims were Marichell Chatman, 24; her 4-year-old daughter, Marchae; and Chatman’s aunt, Linda Chatman. Three others, including two children, survived their wounds.

Keith has maintained his innocence.

The case attracted national attention when President Bill Clinton mentioned it during a visit to Bucyrus to tout the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994, which featured funds to hire 100,000 additional police officers.

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In the years since, Keith’s younger brother Charles, who lives in Canton, has devoted his life to proving his brother’s innocence. Charles Keith has since become a family liaison with Death Penalty Action, a national anti-death penalty organization.

In recent years, questions have swirled around the initial investigation and others done by retired Ohio Bureau of CriminaI Investigation lead investigator Michelle Yezzo.

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More: Did investigator imperil Kevin Keith’s case?

A Crawford County jury found Keith guilty and he was sentenced to death, but in September 2010, then-Gov. Ted Strickland commuted Keith’s sentence to life without parole. Keith has unsuccessfully appealed his sentence many times.

The Ohio Parole Board recently recommended against clemency for Keith.

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Where and when is Kim Kardashian appearing for the panel discussion?

The panel discussion is taking place Thursday afternoon. Organizers have requested that media outlets not publish its location, but The Dispatch will be present to bring you the latest.

Monroe Trombly covers breaking and trending news.

mtrombly@dispatch.com

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@monroetrombly

This article originally appeared on The Columbus Dispatch: Kim Kardashian is at Ohio State to talk about Kevin Keith

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