Project to End Juvenile Life Without Parole

The life without parole sentence condemns a juvenile to die in prison and violates international human rights standards of juvenile justice. The USF School of Law’s Human Rights in Criminal Sentencing Project has authored influential reports, law review articles, and amicus briefs on juvenile life without parole (JLWOP) cases and issues.

The projects research has been cited by courts across the country, including the U.S. Supreme Court.

The project also addresses de facto life without parole cases. Although not a JLWOP sentence, juveniles in the United States have been subject to extremely long sentences. Some of these sentences are for such long durations or terms, they amount to a life sentence without the possibility of release. These sentences contravene the United States’ treaty obligations, and the United States Supreme Court mandates under both Graham and Miller.

The projects major reports, articles, and law review articles are available for download below. We welcome your feedback, comments, or questions. Please contact Connie de la Vega at delavega@usfca.edu.

PDF iconSENTENCING OUR CHILDREN TO DIE IN PRISON: GLOBAL LAW AND PRACTICE

The Frank C. Newman International Human Rights Clinic, University of San Francisco School of Law, in association with Human Rights Advocates (2007)

By Director of Human Rights Programs Michelle Leighton and Professor Connie de la Vega

PDF iconREPORT ON HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATIONS: SENTENCING OUR CHILDREN TO DIE IN PRISON

University of San Francisco Law Review (2008)

By Professor Connie de la Vega and Director of Human Rights Programs Michelle Leighton

Briefs

PDF iconBostic v. Bowersox

United States District Court, Eastern District of Missouri, Amicus Brief

PDF iconCommonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Batzig

Superior Court of Pennsylvania, Brief for Appellant

PDF iconRoper v. Simmons

Supreme Court of the United States, Amicus Brief

PDF iconGraham and Sullivan v. Florida

Supreme Court of the United States, Amicus Brief

PDF iconGraham and Sullivan v. Florida Response

Response to the 16 members of Congress

PDF iconCalifornia v. Caballero

Supreme Court of California, Amicus Brief

PDF iconMiller v. Alabama and Jackson v. Hobbs

Supreme Court of the United States, Amicus Brief

California v. Gutierrez

Supreme Court of California, Amicus Brief

Hill v. United States

Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, Amicus Brief