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For immediate release -- Monday, May 17, 2010.
Contact Bob Brammer - 515-281-6699.

Statement of the Iowa Attorney General’s Office on the impact in Iowa of the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Graham vs. Florida.
Monday, May 17, 2010

Statement of the Attorney General’s Office:

We are evaluating the impact in Iowa of today’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling, which held that juveniles who commit crimes in which no one was killed may not be sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

In Iowa, according to information from the Dept. of Corrections, the decision appears to affect seven cases where a person who was a juvenile at the time of the offense was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole on a conviction of First-Degree Kidnapping.

We are evaluating what impact the court decision has on those seven cases. The convictions themselves in those cases are not affected by the Sup. Ct. decision. It would be up to the Parole Board and the Legislature to consider policies and practices to provide for a possibility of parole in these kinds of cases.

(Note: A conviction in Iowa for First-Degree Sexual Abuse also could result in a sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole, but there appear to be no such sentences in which the offender was a juvenile at the time of the offense. Also: According to Dept. of Corrections information, it appears that Iowa has 39 cases where a killing was involved and inmates are serving a sentence of life-without-parole for an offense in which the offender was a juvenile at the time; those cases are not affected by the Supreme Court decision today.)

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