TAMPA, Fla. — A Florida appellate court has ruled against a death row inmate who was convicted of killing a couple and then petitioned to keep a vintage pickup that belonged to one of the victims.

The ruling may end a legal battle that has dragged on seven years after the slayings of Richard and Karla Van Dusen in Tierra Verde, near St. Petersburg.

William Deparvine was sentenced to death in 2006 for the killings, but continued to press his claim on a restored 1971 Chevrolet Cheyenne the slain man restored. Authorities say Deparvine forged a bill of sale for the truck, then killed the couple and tried to frame someone else.

The St. Petersburg Times reported that an appellate court panel on Friday upheld a judge’s finding that Deparvine had no claim to the truck.