US Supreme Court reinstates death sentence for Arizona inmate

George Kayer (Photo Courtesy: Arizona Attorney General's Office)

The U.S. Supreme Court has reinstated the death sentence for an Arizona prison inmate convicted of killing a man during a 1994 robbery in Yavapai County, state prosecutors said Tuesday.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals had sided with George Kayer in his claim that his lawyers made a mistake by not presenting some evidence during his sentencing.

The appeals court concluded that Kayer was entitled to a new sentencing trial even though Arizona courts had consistently denied it.

The Supreme Court’s decision Monday reiterates the law that requires federal courts to defer to state court decisions under the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act, the Arizona Attorney General’s Office said.

According to a statement from the Arizona Attorney General's Office, Kayer killed his friend, Delbert Haas, while pulled over alongside an interstate highway in Yavapai County in 1994.

There are more than 100 death row inmates currently being housed in Arizona, but the state hasn’t carried out an execution since July 2014.

Attorney General Mark Brnovich said the state settled a lawsuit challenging its lethal injection procedures five months ago, putting Arizona one step closer to resuming executions.

Kayer has exhausted all of his appeals, according to authorities.

Tune in to FOX 10 Phoenix for the latest news

For the latest local news, download the FOX 10 News app.

Sign up for FOX 10 email alerts, newsletters