A Knox County stepmother will spend more than two decades behind bars for abusing her stepsons.

On March 12, Jessica Cox was found guilty of beating, burning and starving her two stepsons. She was convicted on 24 of the 29 counts against her. That includes 23 counts of aggravated child abuse and 1 count of reckless endangerment.

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The abuse came to light when the boys, who were handcuffed together, escaped the house and made it to Farragut High School.

On Friday, a judge sentenced Cox to 24 years in prison---12 years behind bars for each victim, and she is not eligible for parole. That's the maximum sentence the state requested, though Cox will get credit for time already served.

The boys' father, Kenneth MciItosh pleaded guilty to 15 counts of aggravated child abuse. His sentencing is set for June 1.