Gov. Perry clears Timothy Cole's name, hands his family a pardon - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

3/19/10

Gov. Perry clears Timothy Cole's name, hands his family a pardon

Timothy Cole Timothy Cole
FORT WORTH, TX (KCBD) -

Fort Worth, TX (KCBD) – After 25 years of fighting to clear his name, the Cole family's bitter sweet fight finally came to an end. Governor Rick Perry personally handed Timothy Cole's family a signed copy of his posthumous pardon on Friday in Fort Worth, Texas.

Cole was wrongfully convicted of raping a Texas Tech student back in 1985 He died in prison in 1999 and in 2008 a DNA test implicated another inmate. Gov. Perry signed the pardon on March 1st, but during a ceremony Friday told the Cole family that this was a solemn, but joyful occasion as he presented the family Cole's pardon.

 "I know that nothing that anyone in this room, this state, or this world can do could restore Tim to life but we can state clearly, with the full weight of Texas law behind us that your son was no criminal," Gov. Perry said.

Cole's mother, Ruby Session, thanked the Innocence Project of Texas, Legislators, Gov. Perry and all those involved in clearing her son's name. "Today is the day our bitter sweet quest is over," Session said who also thanked her son for his contributions toward improving the criminal justice system in Texas.

A handful of people who had been exonerated also attended Friday's ceremony. The Cole family urged those convicted behind bars that are waiting on d-n-a testing not to give up.  This was the first posthumous DNA pardon in the country and the first posthumous pardon in Texas. After the ceremony, the family planned to visit Cole's grave.

©2010 KCBD NewsChannel 11. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

©2010 KCBD NewsChannel 11. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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