New Constitutional Right for Juveniles
In an opinion announced today by Justice Kennedy the Supreme Court prohibits the sentencing of juveniles to life in prison without the possibility of parole if the crime does not involve murder. What this means for the 129 prisoners in state and federal penitentiaries convicted as minors and sentenced to life w/o parole is a chance to show that they are “fit to rejoin society”, but no guarantee that they will ever be freed. And from now on every juvenile convicted of a “non-homicide” crime may not be sentenced to life at the outset, but must have the possibility of release; they can still be sentenced to a very long term guaranteeing their incarceration into old-age.
WaPo story here.