juvenile

Tim Pearce / Flickr

In the 1990s, many states, including Michigan, began getting tough on juvenile crime.

That meant harsher sentencing and sending more youth to adult prisons.

Between 2003 and 2013, Michigan sent thousands of youth under the age of 18 to serve time in adult prisons.

But many are beginning to question the effectiveness of those “tough on crime” policies.

Advocates for reform say that sending a young person to an adult prison can have devastating consequences.

Flickr - Michael Coghlan

A lot has changed when it comes to the way we approach juvenile justice in the past couple of decades. In the mid 1990s, Michigan was one of a number of states that took a “tough on youth crime” stance, enacting laws that locked up more kids, even for non-violent crimes. Activists and academics alike challenged harsh sentences in favor of community based alternatives.

miccd.org

“Michigan’s outdated approach to youth justice does little to rehabilitate children, protect public safety or wisely invest taxpayer dollars.” This quote is among the provocative conclusions of a new report, co-authored by Michelle Weemhoff and her organization the Michigan Council on Crime and Delinquency.

Wikimedia Commons

The Michigan Supreme Court will hear arguments today on what should be done with more than 350 prison inmates sentenced to life with no chance of parole as juveniles.  The Michigan case follows a 2012 U.S. Supreme Court decision declaring life without parole sentences for minors violates the U.S. constitution’s ban on cruel and unusual punishment. 

Current State speaks with the Michigan Public Radio Network’s statehouse bureau chief, Rick Pluta.

The Michigan Supreme Court will decide whether more than 300 inmates sentenced to life without parole for murders committed while they were juveniles are entitled to parole hearings.

People serving mandatory life sentences for crimes they committed as juveniles would not get a chance at re-sentencing, under a bill approved Thursday by the state Senate.

A group of state lawmakers is focusing its attention this summer on bills dealing with Michigan’s so-called “juvenile lifers.”

southerfried / morgueFile

A U.S. Supreme Court decision banning automatic life sentences for juveniles does not apply to those already serving in Michigan.  

WKAR File Photo

Juveniles convicted of murder in Michigan would no longer face mandatory life sentences under bills in the state House.   

Kevin Rosseel / morgueFile

Judges on a Michigan Court of Appeals panel say state lawmakers should figure out how to comply with a U.S. Supreme Court ruling on so-called “juvenile lifers.”

Kevin Rosseel / morgueFile

State Attorney General Bill Schuette isn’t done trying to make sure everyone sentenced as juveniles to life without parole in Michigan remains behind bars.

As Michigan Public Radio’s Jake Neher reports, the U.S. Supreme Court in June declared mandatory life sentences for juveniles unconstitutional.

southerfried / morgueFile

Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette is against holding re-sentencing hearings for hundreds of inmates sentenced to life with no chance of parole as juveniles. That’s despite a U.S. Supreme Court decision that struck down mandatory life-without-parole sentences for juveniles.

Kevin Rosseel / morgueFile

A state House committee held a hearing Tuesday on what Michigan needs to do to comply with a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling.

Courtesy / Ingham County

A ruling last week by the U.S. Supreme Court has confusing repercussions for a recent court decision in Lansing.  The high court ruled that laws like Michigan’s that sometimes mandate life sentences for juveniles found guilty of serious crimes are unconstitutional.

In January, a jury found 15-year old Charles Lewis Junior of Lansing guilty of accomplice to murder, a felony. WKAR’ Mark Bashore spoke with Ingham County Judge George Economy to clarify how the ruling impacts Lewis’ sentence.     

southerfried / morgueFile

Arrangements are being made to return more than 350 Michigan inmates to the courts where they were sentenced. The prisoners will get new sentences under a U.S. Supreme Court decision this week.

Kevin Rosseel / morgueFile

The U. S. Supreme Court has struck down state laws like one in Michigan that automatically sends some juveniles to prison for life with no chance of parole.

rosebennet/flickr

The U.S.  Supreme Court has struck down state laws that allow juveniles to be sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole. Michigan is one of several states that allowed juveniles to be sentenced to life without parole.