EvidenceProf Blog

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

Thursday, December 21, 2017

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

This is the seventeenth 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 Kansas treats juvenile homicide offenders better than Tennessee.

Pursuant to Section 21-6618 of the Kansas Statutes Annotated,

Upon conviction of a defendant of capital murder and a finding that the defendant was less than 18 years of age at the time of the commission thereof, the court shall sentence the defendant as otherwise provided by law, and no sentence of death or life without the possibility of parole shall be imposed hereunder.

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



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