Friday, June 6, 2014
Tonight at 5:00pm I will once again be a guest on the Fox 25 Evening News where I’ll be discussing with Maria Stephanos Thursday’s parole board hearing and decision to grant parole to Frederick Christian. In 1994, Christian, while still a juvenile, was sentenced to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole because of his role in a robbery that resulted in the death of two individuals, and seriously wounding a third.
However, in light of a U.S. Supreme Court decision and a Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court decision, juveniles can no longer be sentenced to life in prison without the option of parole citing the 8th Amendment’s cruel and unusual punishment clause. The retroactive rulings now require juveniles convicted of first degree murder to serve at least 15 years after their conviction for parole eligibility, which is the same for an individual convicted of second degree murder.
In response to those rulings, I sponsored a bill setting parole for juveniles convicted of first degree murder at 35 years. The bicameral and bipartisan bill, which has 32 co-sponsors, has the support of the District Attorneys Association. To read more about the bill, please click here to read a previous blog post.
Tune in at 5:00pm to watch tonight’s Fox 25 segment.