U.S. Supreme Court ruling on juvenile life sentences does not apply to Oklahoma

State does not have statute making life sentences mandatory for adults or juveniles convicted of first-degree murder.
by Tim Willert Published: June 26, 2012

At a glance

Court ruling does not affect state

Monday's ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court barring states from imposing mandatory life sentences without parole for juveniles will not affect Oklahoma because no such statute exists here, authorities said.

“Oklahoma does not have a sentencing scheme that mandates a sentence of life without the possibility of parole for juveniles or adults in homicide cases,” said Diane Clay, spokeswoman for state Attorney General Scott Pruitt. “So today's decision should not impact any of the sentences received in the state of Oklahoma.”

Oklahoma County Public Defender Robert Ravitz agreed, saying “Oklahoma's statute is not mandatory, so the ruling does not affect anyone in Oklahoma.”

The high court ruled that it is unconstitutional for states to require juveniles convicted of murder to be sentenced to life in prison without possibility of parole.

Tim Willert, Staff Writer

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by Tim Willert
Education Reporter
Tim Willert is a native Californian with Oklahoma ties who covers education. Prior to moving to Oklahoma in June 2011, he was as an editor for FOXSports.com in Century City, Calif., and reported on courts for the Los Angeles Daily Journal and...
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