Where is Rusty Yates now? His low-key life detailed

In 2001, Russell ‘Rusty’ Yates returned home from his job at NASA to a nightmarish scene: his ex-wife, Andrea Yates, had drowned their five children in a bathtub. Rusty refused to blame Andrea, testifying during her trial: “She kind of described it as a dark period, that she was in a dark place.”

Andrea suffered from severe postpartum depression and had twice tried to commit suicide. Rusty said Andrea’s mental health dipped rapidly in the months preceding the murders. Russell faced criticism for failing to care for his wife but insisted he’d done enough. 

Yates blamed Dr. Mohammed Saeed for taking Andrea off an antipsychotic drug two days before the drownings. 

Rusty Yates maintains a low profile while raising his son alongside ex-wife Laura Arnold

After Andrea’s trial and retrial, Rusty Yates married Laura Arnold and became the step-father to her children from a previous marriage. The couple welcomed their son in March 2008. 

Andrea’s attorney George Parnham told ABC News that Andrea was happy for Rusty: “Andrea just wants life to go on and is at peace with this and she just wants the best for Rusty and his new wife and the baby.”

According to court documents, Arnold filed for divorce in 2015. The couple co-parent their son, who is now 14 years old. 

Reports claim Rusty maintains contact with Andrea, who’s incarcerated at the minimum security Kerrville State Hospital. Andrea is receiving treatment for her psychosis and faces periodic jury trials to determine her competency for trial. 

Following her retrial, the jury found her not guilty by reason of insanity. Andrea’s case occasionally comes up for review, but she’s never sought to be released. Parnham told ABC News that Andrea has made progress and, in his opinion, she might one day rejoin society. 

Rusty keeps track of Andrea’s progress through monthly phone calls and an annual visit. Rusty told Oprah Winfrey that he chose not to focus on the tragedy but on the happy times the family shared before the murders:

“It’s real easy to get caught up in the fact that they suffered, or that they’re gone, and what I tried to do was say, ‘Look, I’m not gonna let these events steal that joy, the joy that we had for those seven years.’”

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