June 20 2017, 6:22 p.m.
Twenty-five years after they were convicted of a crime that never happened, Fran and Dan Keller were formally exonerated on June 20 in Austin, Texas.
The couple’s prosecution in 1992 was part of a wave of cases across the country amid an episode of mass hysteria known as the Satanic Panic. Beginning in the 1980s, accusations flew that the childcare industry had been infiltrated by bands of Satanists hell-bent on brainwashing and sexually abusing young children. The Kellers’ exoneration closes a decadeslong chapter of profound injustice for a couple that paid an exceptionally high price for the credulousness of local law enforcement.