Juvenile Justice Information Exchange, July 11, 2011 California’s SB 9 was approved by the Assembly Public Safety Committee with a 5-2 vote in early July. Next the bill will continue to the Assembly Appropriation Committee before being put to a vote on the floor of the Assembly. The bill cleared the Senate in June with a 21-16 vote.
Los Angeles Times, Jan. 4, 2011 The woman who killed her pimp as a teen but turned her life around in prison was granted clemency. A bill in the state Senate would allow similar leniency for juvenile offenders.
Ventura County Star, Dec. 10, 2011 Last August, the California Assembly failed to pass legislation that would allow for the review of cases involving juveniles sentenced to life without parole, potentially resulting in a new sentence.
Editorial, Los Angeles Times, Jan. 14, 2010 [SB 399] demonstrates California's faith that not every person whose life got off to a destructive start remains irredeemable. It offers a window of hope to imprisoned teenage offenders and gives them an incentive to learn, reform and aspire to a productive life.
Editorial, San Francisco Chronicle, June 1, 2009 A state with a $24.3 billion deficit and a sputtering economy needs to get serious about reassessing all of its policies. One of California's most senseless practices, in its waste of tax dollars and human capability, is a law that allows juvenile offenders to be sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
Los Angeles Times, April 30, 2009 Children, even really bad ones, are different from adults. That basic truth is the foundation of our juvenile justice system, which seeks to protect society from violent youth while recognizing that they haven't yet developed an adult's brainpower, resistance to peer pressure, judgment and thus moral capacity.
Youth Law News, April-June 2010 The Fair Sentencing for Youth Act, which allows juveniles serving life sentences to have an opportunity for parole after 10 years, passed out of the California Assembly Appropriations Committee.
Youth Law News, Oct.-Dec. 2009 The Assembly Public Safety Committee has approved SB 399, which would give juveniles sentenced to life without parole the opportunity to have their cases reconsidered after serving 10 years. A court could then reduce the sentence to 25 years with the possibility of parole.
Youth Law News, April-June 2009 There is growing public awareness that is it unjust to hold juvenile offenders to the same standard of blame as adults. Scientific research shows that youth do not have the same capacity as adults to use reasoned, mature judgment, or to control impulsive behavior. Newspaper editorials across the nation increasingly embrace the basic notion that “[c]hildren, even really bad ones, are different from adults” and should be treated differently in criminal sentencing because “they haven’t yet developed an adult’s brainpower, resistance to peer pressure, judgment and thus moral capacity.”
Interview with Sara Kruzan, sentenced to life without parole at the age of 16