In 2005, the U.S. Supreme Court decided the case of Roper v. Simmons.
The Court ruled that the execution of child offenders was unconstitutional,
finding that juveniles are “categorically less culpable” than
adult criminals. Here you will find the full decision in the Roper
case, sample briefing materials for litigators on the constitutional
and international law aspects of life without parole sentencing,
downloadable precedential state cases, and links to other sites
that provide information on executive clemency applications.
Click here to
visit the American Bar Association's information page on the
Roper V. Simmons case, which has all the amicus briefs filed.
available for attorneys representing young offenders facing
life without parole sentences.
For state-by-state information on applying for executive
clemency visit: www.cjpf.org
View the precedential state cases:
OUTCOME: The supreme court found the multiple-murder
sentencing statute, as applied to defendant, violated the proportionate
penalties clause of the Illinois Constitution. It affirmed the
trial court's imposition of a term of 50 years' imprisonment.
court reduced the sentence because the trial court failed to
consider the defendant's age as a mitigating factor
when it imposed the sentence, but affirmed all of the convictions
except the rape conviction.
OUTCOME: The court affirmed the convictions and sentences except
for that part of the sentence which precluded the defendants
OUTCOME: The court reduced defendant's
sentence to life imprisonment with the possibility of parole.