Dead inmate formally exonerated of Lubbock rape conviction - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

4/7/09

Dead inmate formally exonerated of Lubbock rape conviction

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - He's "100 percent" innocent. A judge in Austin Tuesday formally exonerated a man who died in prison in 1999 while serving time for a rape he did not commit.

A hearing was held with the family of Timothy Cole and the woman who was the rape victim. Judge Charles Baird said mistaken eyewitness identification, questionable suspect lineups and a faulty investigation by Lubbock police led to Cole's wrongful conviction in 1986.

Cole died of complications from asthma while serving a 25-year term.

DNA testing cleared Cole.

His mother, Ruby Session, said she's relieved and she always felt that one day the exoneration would happen. The Associated Press reports Cole is the first person in Texas to be posthumously exonerated after DNA testing showed he did not commit the crime.

Cole's family will meet Wednesday with Governor Rick Perry to seek a pardon.

Timothy Cole Exonerated 24 Years Later
It was a bitter sweet day for Timothy Cole's family. Even though they lost their son while in prison in 1999, nearly 10 years the fight to clear his name is final and the family is the ready to move on.

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