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Juvenile life sentences debated at Louisiana Capitol

6 years 10 months 1 week ago Tuesday, April 18 2017 Apr 18, 2017 April 18, 2017 8:00 PM April 18, 2017 in News
Source: WBRZ

BATON ROUGE- Republican Senator Dan Claitor presented his bill to eliminate life sentences for juveniles without parole Tuesday.

Hearing it in his Senate Judiciary Committee, Claitor argued to grant the possibility of parole after the juvenile serves 30 years of their sentence.

Claitor is attempting to bring Louisiana law in compliance with two rulings by the U.S. Supreme Court which found it unconstitutional to sentence juveniles for life without the possibility of eventual freedom.

"We're hoping to balance victims' rights with what the Supreme Court told us to do," said Claitor.

If passed, about 300 Louisiana prisoners could become eligible for parole after 30 years with good behavior.

Under the current language, Senate Bill 16 would still allow for a life sentence without parole for a juvenile convicted of first-degree murder who also had their character examined in a special hearing.

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