Supreme Court: Life without parole for juvenile offenders violates 8th Amendment

Published On: 25th June 2012
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In a 5-4 decision on two separate cases involving homicide convictions for two 14 year old boys, the United States Supreme Court held that the Eighth Amendment’s ban on cruel and unusual punishment prohibits sentencing that mandates life without parole for juvenile offenders.

Relying on precedent establishing that children are constitutionally different from adults for sentencing purposes, the Court stated that punishment for crime should be ‘graduated and proportioned’ for the offender and the offense. The Court explained that the challenged sentencing schemes prevent considerations of the offender’s age, characteristics and circumstances related to the offense, and likelihood of rehabilitation.

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Coley Grostyan is a Minneapolis, MN criminal defense attorney who represents individuals accused of crimes in the Twin Cities and surrounding suburbs, and throughout the State of Minnesota.

Law Office of Coley J. Grostyan, PLLC
701 Fourth Avenue South, Suite 300
Minneapolis, MN 55415
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