MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — Convicted mass murderer Derrick Dearman was back in a Mobile County Courtroom Thursday afternoon, for a hearing to vacate several of his convictions.

It took just a few minutes for a Mobile County judge to vacate four of Derrick Dearman’s 10 charges, but Dearman is still sentenced to death.

“When you chop five people alive with an axe and they are still very much alive suffering from chop wounds from an axe and then you go and shoot them one by one, there’s no case more deserving of the death penalty,” said Ashley Rich, the Mobile County District Attorney.

Dearman killed five people, including a pregnant woman during a meth-fueled rampage at a home in Citronelle in August of 2016. Dearman shot up crystal meth before using an axe and a gun to slaughter the victims in their sleep.

In September of 2018, Dearman was convicted of 10 counts of capital murder, that number was higher than the number of victims because there were overlapping charges of capital murder committed during a burglary and capital murder of multiple people. He was sentenced to death in October of 2018.

He appealed that some of the convictions violated double jeopardy rules, and the court of criminal appeals agreed. So the judge vacated four of the five capital murder charges.

“There should have only been one count of capital murder pursuant to during the course of one course or scheme of conduct, in other words, this was one large act committed by Derrick Dearman that killed five people,” said Rich.

In court, Dearman’s attorney argued that because four of the capital murder charges were vacated, the death penalty is no longer appropriate in this case.

Stay ahead of the biggest stories, breaking news and weather in Mobile, Pensacola and across the Gulf Coast and Alabama. Download the WKRG News 5 news app and be sure to turn on push alerts.