Lawyer Argues for Andrea Yates Release


Andrea Yates' former husband, Rusty Yates, has also made strides toward improving his life and raising awareness about mental illness. He stayed married to Andrea until four years after their children's deaths. They remain friends, and he continues to visit her, according to acquaintances who know them both. Rusty has remarried and now has a 3-year-old son.

According to his blog, Rusty enrolled in law school in 2009 "to improve the way in which our society responds to crime, particularly for mentally ill defendants, and to improve our health care system, particularly for mentally ill patients." He also says of Yates. "She is doing well, all things considered. ... She's been medically stable for five years."

A decade after the tragedy, Parnham believes that doctors now will recognize Andrea Yates' improvement. "No one loves those kids more than this woman -- the real culprit was mental illness."

After years of waiving the right to the hearing, Parnham plans to go before the court this year to argue that Yates is no longer dangerous to herself or others, and that her mental condition will not deteriorate if she is released. A judge or jury will eventually determine whether Yates meets these standards.

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