Supreme Court rejects serial killer Yates' petition to overturn death sentence

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — The Washington Supreme Court has again rejected an effort by serial killer Robert Yates to overturn his conviction and death sentence.

Yates contends he received ineffective counsel during his 2002 trial in which he received the death penalty. His conviction and sentence were affirmed by the high court in 2007.

State law requires that personal restraint petitions must be filed within one year of the judgment and sentence becoming final.

But Yates waited seven years to file his petition, so the Supreme Court on Thursday unanimously rejected it as untimely.

In a plea deal, Yates pleaded guilty to murdering a total of 13 women in Spokane, Walla Walla and Skagit counties. He was later convicted of murdering two women in Pierce County and sentenced to death for those crimes.