EvidenceProf Blog

Editor: Colin Miller
Univ. of South Carolina School of Law

Friday, December 22, 2017

Cyntoia Brown & the "51-To-Life" Project: Kentucky

This is the eighteenth in a series of posts on the "51-To-Life" Project. In Tennessee, if a juvenile is convicted of first-degree murder, there are two sentencing options: (1) life without the possibility of parole; or (2) life with the possibility of parole, with that possibility only existing after the juvenile has been incarcerated for 51 years. In this post, I will explain why Kentucky treats juvenile homicide offenders better than Tennessee. 

Section 640.040(1) of the Kentucky Revised Statutes states in relevant part that

A youthful offender convicted of a capital offense regardless of age may be sentenced to a term of imprisonment appropriate for one who has committed a Class A felony and may be sentenced to life imprisonment without benefit of parole for twenty-five (25) years.

Therefore, Kentucky does not allow for a sentence of life without parole for a juvenile homicide offender. As a result, Kentucky treats juvenile homicide offenders better than Tennessee.



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