No Life Sentences for Non-Homicide Juvenile Convictions

The Supreme Court announced a 5-4 decision today stating that juvenile defendants who have not been convicted of murder cannot be sentenced to life with no chance of parole. We’ve blogged previously on juvenile law issues, such as the success of Philadelphia’s Juvenile Law Center, trying youth as adults, and a case in New York over juvenile detention conditions.

This case will not lead to the immediate release of any prisoners, but may at least lead to parole hearings for some who previously did not have that option. About 100 are serving life sentences with no parole for non-murder crimes, in only 8 states.

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