Juvenile Law Center’s brief argues that the mandatory sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole imposed on a 16-year-old is a disproportionate punishment under the U.S. and Massachusetts Constitutions.
Argued that the juvenile court erred by waiving its jurisdiction of a youth and transferring the youth to adult court based on the charged offense alone, without an individualized determination of the youth's maturity, culpability, and capacity for change.
Juvenile Law Center filed an amicus brief in the Ohio Supreme Court on behalf of Brandon Moore, who received a sentence of 112 years for non-homicide offenses he committed when he was only 15 years-old.
Juvenile Law Center was co-counsel in Montgomery v. Louisiana, a case recently decided by the U.S. Supreme Court holding that Miller v. Alabama (2012) applies retroactively to individuals serving mandatory juvenile life without parole sentences.
These briefs involved a thirteen-year-old student who was questioned by four adults, including a uniformed police officer, on school grounds regarding a series of break-ins. Juvenile Law Center argued that the student should have been considered in custody for Miranda purposes.
Supreme Court held the execution of juveniles unconstitutional. Juvenile Law Center’s brief argued the developmental differences between adolescents and adults in critical areas, including impulse control and understanding consequences.
One of the most important lessons from our 40 years of experience is that children involved with the justice and foster care systems need zealous legal advocates. Your support for our work is more important now than ever before.