Judge grants motion for more DNA testing in Kerry Max Cook case

Published: Apr. 9, 2012 at 12:56 PM CDT|Updated: Apr. 9, 2012 at 5:57 PM CDT
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TYLER, TX (AP/KLTV) - Monday Judge John Ovard, a visiting judge from Dallas, granted a motion for more DNA testing in 35-year-old murder case.

Kerry Max Cook was twice sentenced to death after being convicted of the 1977 rape and murder of Linda Jo Edwards. Courts overturned both convictions. In 1999, Cook agreed to plead no contest to murder in exchange for a sentence of time served.

Now, Cook wants new DNA testing that he says could prove he is innocent. The current Smith County district attorney, Matt Bingham, has said he doesn't oppose more testing. The prosecutor during one of Cook's trials is now a judge and has already stepped aside. But Judge Christi Kennedy, another Smith County judge, has refused.

Monday Judge Ovard denied the motion of recusal of Judge Kennedy. Ovard also denied the order requesting the trial be tried in another court.

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