As some of you may be aware, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (SJC) will be hearing oral arguments this week on two cases involving juvenile sentencing, in light of the Supreme Court decision that mandatory live without parole for juveniles is unconstitutional. One regards the retroactivity possibility, and the other involves the appropriate sentence that should be imposed.
Diatchenko v. District Attorney for the Suffolk District
Juvenile Offenders; Constitutional Law– Whether a 2012 Supreme Court decision that a sentence of life without parole for a juvenile offender violates the Eighth Amendment applies to a 1981 conviction.
Commonwealth v. Brown (SJC-11454)
Juvenile Offenders; Sentencing– This case concerns the appropriate sentence for a juvenile convicted of first-degree murder after a 2012 Supreme Court decision that a sentence of life without parole for a juvenile offender violates the Eighth Amendment where the offense occurred prior to the Supreme Court decision. If anyone is interested in attending as a group (i.e. meeting at the courthouse to try to sit together), feel free to contact Hannah at firstname.lastname@example.org.