Our brief urged the court to grant review to address the constitutionality of Ohio's felony murder statute as applied to juveniles because it prescribes a mandatory 15 years to life sentence without consideration of youth.
The brief argued that greater procedural protections—including the right to counsel—are required during parole hearings to ensure that juveniles serving life sentences are given a meaningful opportunity to obtain release as required by Graham.
Our brief argues that overruling Parsons and decertifying the class in B.K. would have a serious, adverse effect on class action impact litigation, and that it would have an especially negative impact on access to the courts and appropriate relief for system-involved children who are subjected to constitutional wrongs.
Our brief urged the court to grant review in order to clarify that its prior rulings extend to term-of-years sentences that are the functional equivalent of juvenile life without parole and hold that any sentence that condemns a youth to die in prison is constitutionally disproportionate regardless of whether it is formally labeled “life without parole.”