A US court has refused to release a prisoner who claimed he had ended his life sentence when he briefly "died".
Benjamin Schreiber, 66, was sentenced to life without contest in Iowa for becoming a man to death in 1996.
He said his sentence ended when his heart stopped during a medical emergency four years ago, even though he revived.
But the judges said that Schreiber's command – while the original one – was "transcending."  They said it was "unlikely" to be dead, because he had signed his own legal documents in the case.
In 2015, Schreiber developed septic poisoning as a result of kidney stones. He had to be resuscitated by doctors in hospitals, but was fully recovered and returned to prison.
In Schreiber's application, filed last year, he said that he had been revived against his will and that his brief "death" meant that his life sentence had technically ended.
The district court decided against Schreiber – a decision his lawyer made to the state appeals court.
On Wednesday, the Court of Appeal upheld the court's ruling. It added that his sentence would not end until a medical examiner formally declares him dead.