Iowa justices to consider sentences for teenagers

News

October 17th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Supreme Court might not be done changing the criminal justice system’s approach to teenagers who commit serious crimes. The court said Thursday that it would review three cases of inmates serving lengthy prison terms for crimes they committed when they were seventeen. In each case, the offenders argue their lengthy sentences amount to cruel and unusual punishment.

They include a man who was sentenced to a mandatory minimum sentence of 17 years for first-degree robbery; a man serving a life sentence for convictions of second-degree murder and other charges in 1994; and a man sentenced to at least 7 years for second-degree robbery.

The court in August opened the door to shorter sentences for three dozen killers who were juveniles when they were sentenced to life in prison.