HOUSTON (AP) — The U.S. Supreme Court has refused an appeal from a Texas death row inmate convicted of killing a Houston police officer 27 years ago.

The high court, without comment, declined Tuesday to review arguments from lawyers for prisoner Carl Wayne Buntion that an appeal for him unfairly was rejected in the state courts last year.

The 73-year-old Buntion is the state's oldest death row inmate.

He'd been on parole only six weeks in June 1990 when evidence showed he shot and killed 37-year-old Houston officer James Irby during a traffic stop. Buntion, who had a long criminal record, was a passenger in the car Irby pulled over.

His death sentence was vacated by the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals in 2009. A jury in 2012 returned him to death row.