Stop Charging children as adults and especially Life without parole sign now

To: U.S. Government
In March 2005, in the case of Roper V. Simmons, 125 S.Ct. 1183 (2005) the US Supreme Court ruled that juveniles possessed a diminished culpability, and therefore could not be executed. This was made to apply retroactively, thus removing juveniles from death row in the United States. This same reasoning applies to life without parole (LWOP). In June 2006, the U.N. admonished the United States - one of only two countries in the world that permits LWOP for juveniles - for violating Article 37 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which states: "Neither capital punishment nor life imprisonment without the possibility of release shall be imposed for offenses committed by persons below eighteen years of age." Article 24 of the covenant (Articles 7 and 24) states in part, "The State party should ensure that no such child offender is sentenced to life imprisonment without parole, and should adopt all appropriate measures to review the situation of persons already serving such sentence." The U.S. has 2,228 juvenile lifers (in a 2004 estimate), compared with TWELVE juvenile lifers in the rest of the world.
The U.S. government needs to enact change now and heed the advice of the U.N., as well as applying the studies from Roper toward LWOP and stop throwing away our children. LWOP has no number, a juvenile sentenced to LWOP will spend the rest of his or her natural life in prison, making it no different than a sentence of death.

Charging children, as young as 10 years of age, as adults has become the norm and it is time to stop this type of destruction of young lives. Kids are actually receiving worst and longer sentences for their accused crimes than the adults. This type of throw-away child has to stop and if that means to restructure the Juvenile Justice System, then so be it. No kid should ever feel hopeless and helpless or we are just sending them to a slow lonely death behind those cold prison walls.

Sincerely,

The Undersigned


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Jacob McguireBy:
Justice, rights and public orderIn:
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Worldwide

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