Houston Chronicle

Aug. 16, 2001, 9:37PM

Yates lawyer gets court record corrected

By LISA TEACHEY
Houston Chronicle

A defense lawyer for Andrea Pia Yates, the Clear Lake mother accused of drowning her five children, has requested court transcripts be amended to correct his description of his client.

During a hearing earlier this week to set a competency hearing date, lawyer George Parnham said medication is having a "dramatic impact" on Yates.

A court transcript the Chronicle used in reporting on the hearing quoted Parnham as saying the medication was having a "traumatic impact."

Court officials said an amendment to the transcript was filed Thursday to make the correction.

Yates, 37, has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to capital murder charges in the deaths of three of her children -- Noah, 7; John, 5; and Mary, 6 months. Houston police said Yates called them to her home in the 900 block of Beachcomber on June 20 and admitted drowning the children.

Yates is not charged with the other children's deaths, but prosecutors have said they plan to present evidence about the deaths of Paul, 3, and Luke, 2, during the trial.

Harris County District Attorney Chuck Rosenthal said he will seek the death penalty so jurors have a full range of punishment options.

State District Judge Belinda Hill, who has imposed a gag order in the case, ruled that a jury should decide whether Yates is competent to stand trial.

A court-appointed psychologist found Yates competent, but defense lawyers say their doctors disagree.

The competency hearing is set for Aug. 28.

Copyright 2001 Houston Chronicle