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The state Assembly could vote this week on legislation that would allow some juvenile offenders to ask a court to review their case after they’ve served 10 years in prison.
The bill, authored by San Francisco State Senator Leland Yee and Assembly Speaker John Perez, could end up with reduced sentences for certain offenders. It could allow some juveniles convicted of first degree murder and sentenced to life with no possibility of parole the chance of getting out of prison. Click to Listen
The California District Attorneys Association and the Assembly Republican Caucus oppose the bill. They say the current system works and only the worst-of-the-worst are eligible for life without parole.
Supporters say juveniles are more likely to be influenced by others and don’t have the same ability to understand the consequences of their actions.
Close to 250 people in California who were juveniles when they committed their crimes are serving lifetime prison sentences without the possibility of parole.