Execution Of Juveniles Held Unconstitutional

2005

In Roper v. Simmons, the U.S. Supreme Court rules that execution of juveniles violates the Eighth Amendment. Writing the majority opinion, Justice Anthony M. Kennedy finds that juveniles demonstrate a “lack of maturity and an underdeveloped sense of responsibility,” are susceptible to peer pressure, and have an immature personality. Therefore, they “cannot with reliability be classified among the worst offenders,” he writes.