No Life Term Without Parole For Juveniles Guilty Of Crimes Other Than Homicide

2010

The U.S. Supreme Court, in a 5-4 decision, rejects life sentences without parole for juveniles who are convicted of crimes other than homicide, saying they violate the Eighth Amendment’s ban on cruel and unusual punishment. The ruling in Graham v. Florida extends the Court’s movement toward treating minors differently from adults. Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, writing for the majority, says states must provide juveniles who receive lengthy sentences a “meaningful” chance at some point to show they should be released.