March 14, 2012 at 4:34 PM by AHN Tom Ramstack – AHN News Legal Correspondent
Washington, D.C., United States (AHN) – The Supreme Court plans to deal with a vexing dilemma next week of when criminals who commit murder are too young to be sentenced to long prison terms.
The hearing involves separate cases of two boys who committed brutal murders when they were 14 years old.
They both were sentenced to life in prison without chance of parole, which prompted outrage among advocates of juvenile justice.
They accuse the courts of brutality for failing to recognize that the boys’ immaturity might have contributed to their criminal behavior.
Alabama’s Equal Justice Initiative, which will argue the case next week on behalf of the defendants, says life in prison for children violates the Eighth Amendment’s ban against “cruel and unusual punishment.”