Supreme Court Rules Mandatory JLWOP Unconstitutional
On June 25, 2012, the United States Supreme Court issued its opinion in Miller v. Alabama, No. 10-9646, and Jackson v. Hobbs, No. 10-9647 holding that “mandatory life without parole for those under the age of 18 at the time of their crimes violates the Eighth Amendment’s prohibition on ‘cruel and unusual punishments’” and that “a judge or jury must have the opportunity to consider mitigating circumstances before imposing the harshest possible penalty for juveniles.” Read more.

Congratulations to all of the attorneys and advocates who worked so hard to make this happen.

Supreme Court of United States Opinion – Decided June 25, 2012

Decision News Coverage
Justices Bar Mandatory Life Terms for Juveniles - The New York Times
Supreme Court says states may not impose mandatory life sentences on juvenile murderers - The Washington Post
High Court Rejects Mandatory Life Sentences for Juveniles - The Wall Street Journal
Supreme Court rules juvenile life without parole cruel and unusual - The Los Angeles Times
Supreme court rules juvenile life sentences are unconstitutional - The Guardian (UK)
Sentencing Ruling Reflects Rethinking on Juvenile Justice - The New York Times


Juvenile Life Without Parole Supreme Court Argument Transcripts, blog and additional news coverage
Jackson v. Hobbs Transcript
Miller v. Alabama Transcript
JLWOP News Coverage

Virginia Supreme Court Victory for Juvenile Wrongfully Convicted of Rape and Required to Register as a Sex Offender
The Virginia Supreme Court cleared the way for a young man falsely accused and wrongfully convicted of rape as a 15 year old, to sue to overturn his conviction and have his name removed from the state’s sex offender registry. The Court decision rejects the lower court’s ruling that sex offender registration is not a basis for relief once a habeas petitioner has been released from detention. Click link above for the decision.

Virginia Supreme Court Rules that Juvenile Sex Offender Registration Requires Ineffective Assistance of Counsel Challenge
The Virginia Supreme Court overturned a lower court’s ruling that held Virginia courts lose jurisdiction over pending habeas cases and are moot as soon as the petitioner is released from custody. The court's decision, in E.C. v. VA Department of Juvenile Justice, clears the way for the juvenile to overturn his conviction and be removed from the state's sex offender registry.

This decision marks the first time the VA Supreme Court considered whether collateral consequences stemming from a criminal conviction are sufficient to survive a claim of mootness in a habeas corpus proceeding.

National Juvenile Defender Center Receives Creative and Effective Institutions Award from MacArthur Foundation
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