Commuting minor’s death sentence: STANFORD V. COM. (COA 12/07/2007)

STANFORD V. COM.
CRIMINAL:  DEATH SENTENCES FOR THOSE UNDER 18 AT TIME OF COMMISSION OF OFFENSE
2006-CA-001013
PUBLISHED: AFFIRMING
PANEL: VANMETER PRESIDING; COMBS, MOORE CONCUR
COUNTY: JEFFERSON
DATE RENDERED: 12/07/2007

Juvenile whose death sentence was commuted to life without the possibility of parole was not entitled to a new sentencing hearing following Roper v. Simmons, 543 U.S. 551, 125 S.Ct. 1183, 161 L.Ed.2d 1 (2005). In Roper v. Simmons, the United States Supreme Court held unconstitutional the death sentence for offenders who were under the age of eighteen when they committed their crimes. At the time Roper was decided, Stanford was no longer under a death sentence, as his original sentence had been voided by commutation nearly fifteen months earlier. Roper therefore does not have retroactive application to Stanford’s situation.

Scott C. Byrd
Olgin and Byrd

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