Ten Years Later, a Texas Family Seeks a Posthumous Pardon


Ten years ago this week, Timothy Cole died in a Texas prison while serving a 25-year sentence for a crime DNA now proves he didn’t commit. In an op-ed this week in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Cole’s brother Cory D. Session, Sr., writes that his brother deserves a posthumous pardon, fully clearing his name. Session writes:

This year, (Cole) became the first person to be posthumously exonerated, thanks to state District Judge Charlie Baird.

In many of the letters Tim wrote from prison after being convicted of a rape he didn’t commit, he mentioned three things that he longed for — vindication, exoneration and a full pardon from the governor.

The quest for the pardon continues.

On July 1, 2009, Tim’s 49th birthday, Gov. Rick Perry said that he does not have the power to pardon the dead. Perry said he needed a constitutional amendment because of a several-decades-old opinion from former state Attorney General Waggoner Carr that prevents him from doing so. We await a modern opinion from the current attorney general, Greg Abbott.

Read the full op-ed here

. (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 12/1/09)

Also marking the anniversary of his death this week, the Texas Tech University School of Law yesterday announced a scholarship in Cole’s name that will support the studies of aspiring law students. Cole was a Texas Tech student in 1985 when he was arrested for a rape he didn’t commit.

The scholarship fund was started with a $100,000 endowment, which included funds donated by Lubbock attorney Kevin Glasheen and Innocence Project of Texas Chief Counsel Jeff Blackburn.

Read more

. (KCBD, 12/2/09)

Leave a Reply

Thank you for visiting us. You can learn more about how we consider cases here. Please avoid sharing any personal information in the comments below and join us in making this a hate-speech free and safe space for everyone.

This field is required.
This field is required.
This field is required.

We've helped free more than 240 innocent people from prison. Support our work to strengthen and advance the innocence movement.