I can't even find the words to express what I'm feeling after learning about a man right here in Texas who was wrongfully convicted of rape, murder, and mutilation of a 21-year-old young lady. Kerry Max Cook spent 20 years of his life on death row in the Texas state prison system.

Kerry Max Cook, from Tyler, Texas, was charged by Smith County prosecutors with this heinous crime back in 1977. Cook was found guilty not once, but twice, and on the second guilty verdict, he was finally sentenced to death by Smith County prosecutors and a jury. For two decades, Cook continued to appeal his conviction to the State of Texas.

LOOK: This Is Kerry Max Cook Once Convicted Of Murder

From the very beginning, Kerry Max Cook has maintained his innocence, claiming he did not rape, kill, or mutilate 21-year-old Linda Jo Edwards, whose body was discovered by police. Kerry Max Cook went to trial seven times to prove his innocence, filing appeal after appeal to have the charges dismissed.

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The Smith County prosecutor, Tyler Police, and the County Judge were all determined to ensure that Linda Jo Edwards's killer would never be free again and would pay for this crime. Recently, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals reopened the case and reviewed all the evidence.

The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals found Kerry Max Cook innocent of the 1977 murder of Linda Jo Edwards, citing stunning allegations of prosecutorial misconduct that led to Cook spending 20 years on death row for a crime he did not commit.

“This case is riddled with allegations of State misconduct that warrant setting aside Applicant’s conviction,” Judge Bert Richardson wrote in the majority opinion. “And when it comes to solid support for actual innocence, this case contains it all — uncontroverted Brady violations, proof of false testimony, admissions of perjury, and new scientific evidence.” Source: TexasTribune.com Newsletter

Furthermore, Cook, who is now 68, has become a vocal advocate against the death penalty. The ruling ends, as Judge Richardson wrote, “a winding legal odyssey” stretching 40 years that was “marked by bookends of deception.”

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