Category Archives: Sentencing

Book Review: Letters to a Lifer — the Boy “Never to be Released”

By David Pasley, UNC Law 2017 Letters to a Lifer: the Boy “Never to be Released” by Cindy Sanford, with a foreword by Jeanne Bishop, is a powerful and touching narrative that illustrates the folly of life sentences for juvenile … Continue reading

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Posted in Books, Guest Blogger, Juveniles, Miller v. Alabama, Sentencing, Uncategorized, Victimized Children, Visual Arts | Comments Off on Book Review: Letters to a Lifer — the Boy “Never to be Released”

Prisoners in Isolation: In Davis v. Ayala, Justice Anthony Kennedy issues a call to action in his discussion of Solitary Confinement

On March 3, 2015, at the conclusion of oral argument in the U.S. Supreme Court case of Davis v. Ayala, No. 13-1428 (U.S. Jun 18, 2015), Justice Anthony Kennedy asked Hector Ayala’s lawyer, Anthony Dain, a question that the justice … Continue reading

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Posted in Case Law, Conditions of Confinement, Sentencing, U.S. Supreme Court, Uncategorized | 1 Comment

KIDS in Jail: Narrative Nonfiction about Youth Incarceration

By Jane Guttman, Correctional Educator and Author This story emerged from my work inside a juvenile hall school for the past 14 years.  I have seen a range of incidents, cruelty, and traumas that kids have endured in the juvenile … Continue reading

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Posted in Books, Conditions of Confinement, Guest Blogger, Juveniles, Sentencing, Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Juvenile Sentencing Schemes after Miller v. Alabama

By John Mills and Jennifer Breen The Supreme Court’s 2012 decision in Miller v. Alabama continues to create ripple effects throughout the nation’s legal system, several years after it was decided. The narrow holding of Miller was that the Eighth … Continue reading

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Posted in Guest Blogger, Miller v. Alabama, Sentencing, U.S. Supreme Court | Comments Off on Juvenile Sentencing Schemes after Miller v. Alabama

Florida Supreme Court Throws Out Life Sentences for Juveniles

The Florida State Supreme Court unanimously ruled on March 19, 2015, that all of Florida’s juveniles convicted of homicide who received automatic sentences of life in prison must be resentenced under a state law passed in 2014. The long-awaited ruling answers the … Continue reading

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Posted in Graham v. Florida, Miller v. Alabama, Sentencing, U.S. Supreme Court, Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Juvenile Lifers: Reason for Hope

On December 1, 2014, the Supreme Court again deflected an effort to clarify whether its landmark 2012 decision in Miller v. Alabama banning mandatory life without parole sentences for juveniles should be applied retroactively. It was the second time this … Continue reading

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Posted in Adult Court, Case Law, Miller v. Alabama, Sentencing, State Laws, U.S. Supreme Court | 1 Comment

Destructive Justice: A Lost Boy, A Broken System, and the Small Light of Hope

By Patricia Robinson, University of North Carolina School of Law ’16 Destructive Justice: A Lost Boy, A Broken System, and the Small Light of Hope (2014) by Nicholas Frank is a book in which you know the story before you even begin. A … Continue reading

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Posted in Adult Court, Books, Guest Blogger, Sentencing | Comments Off on Destructive Justice: A Lost Boy, A Broken System, and the Small Light of Hope

Life Without Parole: Why it Must End for Youth

The Campaign for the Fair Sentencing of Youth (CFSY) with various partners has recently produced a very effective infographic that they introduce with the following text: In light of the June 25, 2012 U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Miller v. Alabama that … Continue reading

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Posted in Media, Miller v. Alabama, Sentencing, U.S. Supreme Court | Comments Off on Life Without Parole: Why it Must End for Youth

Defending a Terror Suspect

Since the capture and arrest of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev (pictured on the left at his high school graduation in Cambridge, Massachusetts), the college sophomore charged with the Boston Marathon bombing, I have thought about another young man who was charged with … Continue reading

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Posted in Adult Court, Criminal /Juvenile Defense, Legal Profession, Media, Prosecutor's Role, Right to Counsel, Sentencing, Terrorism cases | Comments Off on Defending a Terror Suspect

To Defend a Terrorist: Reflections on Reid, Tsarnaev & How I Got from There to Here

Since my last post, I’ve been occupied with putting myself out there (via print, radio & cable news) to share the message that even those charged with the most heinous offenses are still human beings, that we are each more … Continue reading

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Posted in Criminal /Juvenile Defense, Death Penalty, Sentencing, Terrorism cases, Uncategorized | 1 Comment