Ex state trooper released from prison after 25 year sentence - WSFA.com: News Weather and Sports for Montgomery, AL.

Ex state trooper released from prison after serving 25 year sentence

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Joe Duncan arrested in 1987 for the murder of his trooper girlfriend Elizabeth Cobb. Joe Duncan arrested in 1987 for the murder of his trooper girlfriend Elizabeth Cobb.
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SELMA, AL (WSFA) -

An ex state trooper is out of prison after serving 25 years for his trooper girlfriend's murder.

Joe Duncan pleaded guilty to murdering Alabama State Trooper Elizabeth Cobb in her patrol car in 1987. Police say he shot and killed Cobb near Selma.  She was shot in the back of the head as she sat behind the wheel.

The two had been dating and planning to marry.  Cobb had taken out a $350,000 dollar insurance policy and named Duncan as the beneficiary.  

"It was an interesting trial," says Dallas County District Attorney Michael Jackson.

Jackson remembers the case well. He was an assistant D.A. 

"I was just a young district attorney trying to do my job."

Others remember it, too. Leonard Wilson says he is from the same county as the slain Cobb.

"I do remember passing by on the highway on the day of her funeral and the Adamsville area, the big funeral home of Adamsville and I never saw so many state trooper cars in my life. There must have been 100 of them there that day."

Even though Duncan served his full sentence, it's not enough for one grieving family member.

"Now there's a murderer who has been turned loose who killed my cousin.  So you know it's kind of upsetting and there's absolutely no reason why he should have been let out," says Cobb's cousin Judy Keith.

"Since I've been DA you don't see many 25 year sentences," adds Jackson.

Jackson believes murder convictions deserve more time behind bars. He says rarely do you see sentences like Duncan's anymore.

"We try to make sure that they get a lifelong, stiff sentence and basically spend the rest of their life in prison."

While Jackson disagrees with Duncan's prison release, he says he hopes 25 years was enough time for Duncan to turn his life around for the good.

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