Attorneys Want New Judge for DNA Hearing In Texas Murder Case

TYLER (March 9, 2012)--Attorneys for a man once on death row for the rape and killing of an East Texas woman want his request for new DNA testing to be heard by a judge outside the county.

Kerry Max Cook was twice sentenced to death for the 1977 stabbing of Linda Jo Edwards.

Appeals courts overturned both convictions.

In 1999, Cook agreed to plead no contest to murder in exchange for a sentence of time served and went free.

The prosecutor during one of Cook's trials is now a judge and will not decide on Cook's latest motion.

Cook's attorneys say other Smith County judges should also step aside to avoid the appearance of impropriety.

A no-contest plea is not an admission of guilt.

Cook says new DNA testing could prove his innocence.

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