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January 27, 2018

"Montgomery Momentum: Two Years of Progress since Montgomery v. Louisiana"

Download (6)The title of this post is the title of this short interesting document produced by the Campaign for the Fair Sentencing of Youth. I recommend the whole document, and here are excerpts (with endnotes removed):

On January 25, 2016, the United States Supreme Court decided Montgomery v. Louisiana, giving hope and a chance for life outside of prison to individuals sentenced to life without parole for offenses committed as children.

When the Supreme Court decided Montgomery, over 2,600 individuals in the U.S. were serving juvenile life without parole (JLWOP), a sentence only imposed in the United States. In the two years since Montgomery was decided, seven states and the District of Columbia have banned JLWOP, and the number of individuals serving JLWOP has been cut in half, both through resentencing hearings and state legislative reform.

More than 250 individuals previously serving life without parole for crimes committed as children are now free.  Collectively, they have served thousands of years in prison. These former juvenile lifers now have the chance to contribute meaningfully to their communities....

Henry Montgomery, the petitioner in Montgomery v. Louisiana, remains incarcerated.  The U.S. Supreme Court recognized Mr. Montgomery’s “evolution from a troubled, misguided youth to a model member of the prison community.” Montgomery was resentenced and is now eligible for parole, but because of delays at the parole board and prosecutor opposition, the 71-year-old remains in prison, where he has been since 1963.

Children of color are disproportionately sentenced to life without parole.  When Montgomery was decided, over 70 percent of all individuals serving JLWOP were people of color. These extreme disparities have persisted during the resentencing process following Montgomery, underscoring the racially disparate imposition of JLWOP....

For the approximately 1,300 individuals whose unconstitutional JLWOP sentences have been altered through legislative reform or judicial resentencing to date, the median sentence nationwide is 25 years before parole or release eligibility. This means that most individuals who were unconstitutionally sent to die in prison as children will not be eligible for review or release until at least their 40s. Although Montgomery suggested that providing review after 25 years is an avenue for minimal compliance with Miller, these lengthy sentences continue to violate international human rights standards and far outstrip terms of incarceration for youth in the rest of the developed world.

UPDATE: A helpful tweet led me to think this is a good place to note that the Juvenile Sentencing Project has lots of great juve LWOP/Graham and Miller resources detailing responsive legislation and significant state case law and leading reseach reports.  That Project also helps maintain this great national map that enables one to see how many juve LWOP prisoners were in each state at the time of Miller and now.

January 27, 2018 at 01:59 PM | Permalink


His killing spree likely started as a teenager. Your filthy dirty, traitor lawyer profession protected, empowered and privileged this person. He went on to commit mass murder, including that of a beautiful pregnant celebrity. Your filthy lawyer profession is 100% at fault for his decades long murder spree.


Posted by: David Behar | Jan 28, 2018 12:46:45 AM

You filthy lawyer traitors had dozens of chances of killing Manson in his teens. You protected him, and he became a mass murderer. His career is 100% the fault of the filthy lawyer traitor profession. Now you are going to repeat your betrayal of our nation, you filthy lawyer traitors. You nitwit, dirty traitors sent him to Boy's Town, you morons.

Prof. Berman says I get ad hominem. I get way beyond ad hominem. I want the hierarchy of your filthy criminal cult enterprise stopped. These 25000 traitors must be arrested, given an hour's fair trial, and summarily executed in the court basement upon reading of the verdict, guilty of insurrection against the constitution.

Posted by: David Behar | Jan 28, 2018 3:19:34 AM

The above post is a long series of denier false arguments,

for offenses committed as children

juvenile lifers now have the chance to contribute meaningfully to their communities....

unconstitutional JLWOP sentences

continue to violate international human rights standards

leading research reports.

All are blatant lawyer denier lies.

I do not advocate the only possible response to a denier, an ass kicking. Instead, I want the home addresses. All released serial killers are to be moved next door upon release.

Posted by: David Behar | Jan 28, 2018 3:27:06 AM

Will be interesting to see what those 250 people who are now free do with their lives . . . . .

Posted by: federalist | Jan 28, 2018 1:22:06 PM

If people are to be released, their resting heart rate at age 18 should be considered.

Even controlling for physical fitness, a resting heart rate under 60 predict a 39% violent crime conviction over the next 30 years. In addition, it predicts that the person will be a victim of violent crime. The same is true of low blood pressure.

The theory is that people engage in dangerous acts to normalize this deficiency.


Posted by: David Behar | Jan 29, 2018 12:52:14 AM

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