Texas Appeals Court Refused to Reconsider Yates Ruling

The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals today refused to reconsider a lower ruling that overturned the capital murder convictions of Andrea Yates. A prosecutor says the case of the Clear Lake woman -- who in 2001 drowned her five children in a bathtub -- will be retried, or a plea bargain will be considered.

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South Texas College of Law professor Susan Crump says there will be a limited sentencing option if Andrea Yates is convicted again. Professor Crump says when the death penalty is off the table there is no jury examination.

Crump says a retrial generally favors the defense because since the burden of proof is on the prosecution its witnesses are already on record and any inconsistencies make it easier to establish reasonable doubt.

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