Parolee convicted in brutal murder back in jail

Posted at 5:02 PM, Feb 03, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-03 18:02:12-05

A man granted parole in a brutal murder and mutilation case is again in trouble with the law. According to the Sedgwick County Jail website, officers arrested Kenneth Cook on Sunday following a crash for driving under the influence and speeding.

A jury convicted Cook in 1992 of the brutal murder of Charles Dale Duty. Fishermen found Duty’s body in a river near Topeka, attached to an eight-foot metal beam. His body was badly decomposed, his teeth removed and his tattoos cut off his body.

Cook originally received a 40-year prison sentence without the possibility of parole for his first-degree murder conviction. However, a decision by the Kansas Supreme Court allowed Cook to get a new sentence after he petitioned and won the right to a new trial.

As 41 Action News reported in October 2014, Cook’s new sentence allowed him the possibility of parole. The Kansas Prisoner Review Board granted him parole in January of 2015.

Charles Duty’s sister, Shelleen Eberhart, lives in Florida. After hearing the news that Cook was arrested on Sunday in Wichita, Eberhart told 41 Action News, “[W]e took comfort in having faith that he would eventually violate and then to get the call that he violated within 12 months of being released, I was of course ecstatic and could hardly wait to notify the rest of the family.”

Eberhart added that when she then learned Cook caused a DUI crash, “I was quickly concerned for the driver of the other vehicle. We have worked so hard to prevent anyone else from being hurt by the hands of Kenneth Cook.”

As of Wednesday afternoon, Cook remained in custody in Wichita.