Researcher says juvenile sentencing bill still too harsh

4 years 11 months 4 days ago Wednesday, April 29 2015 Apr 29, 2015 Wednesday, April 29, 2015 4:33:00 PM CDT April 29, 2015 in News
By: Chris Gothner, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - The Missouri Senate passed a bill Tuesday reducing mandatory sentences which currently require life in prison for juveniles convicted of first-degree murder.

The bill mandates new minimum sentences of 35 years for minors under 16 and 50 years for minors between the ages of 16 and 18.

MU social work professor Clark Peters, who researches juvenile justice issues, said the bill is a step in the right direction, but is still too harsh. He said long sentences deny juveniles the opportunity to start over.

"Our justice system is based on second chances," Peters said. "And that's especially true with juveniles."

Peters said juveniles are not able to fully understand the consequences of their actions, as their brains have not fully developed. He said long prison sentences will not help rehabilitate youth offenders.

"I don't want to diminish how important it is for young people to be held accountable for their crimes," Peters said. "But we need to take a broader perspective."

Ultimately, Peters said, it's about not giving up on minors.

"If one of my children had the misfortune of doing something terrible, then I would understand that they need to be held accountable," Peters said. "But I would want them to be in a place where they could turn things around, reflect on what they need to do and not have society give up on them."

KOMU 8 News reached out to Sen. Bob Dixon (R-Springfield), who sponsored the bill, but his office staff said he was on the floor and unavailable for comment at that time.

 

More News

Grid
List
In this COVID-19 town hall, KOMU 8's Emily Spain talks with Dr. Christopher Sampson from MU Health Care about the... More >>
6 hours ago Thursday, April 02 2020 Apr 2, 2020 Thursday, April 02, 2020 9:52:00 PM CDT April 02, 2020 in Continuous News
COLUMBIA - As Missouri gears up for a long fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, University of Missouri System leaders are... More >>
11 hours ago Thursday, April 02 2020 Apr 2, 2020 Thursday, April 02, 2020 5:38:00 PM CDT April 02, 2020 in News
HOWARD COUNTY – As public safety agencies face major personal protective equipment shortages, a local dentist is making sure first... More >>
12 hours ago Thursday, April 02 2020 Apr 2, 2020 Thursday, April 02, 2020 4:34:00 PM CDT April 02, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Business is slow just about everywhere in mid-Missouri, but one local shop owner is using this time to... More >>
12 hours ago Thursday, April 02 2020 Apr 2, 2020 Thursday, April 02, 2020 4:07:00 PM CDT April 02, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Eighth grade English teacher Kelsey Roy is ready to be back with her students. Not over Zoom, but... More >>
14 hours ago Thursday, April 02 2020 Apr 2, 2020 Thursday, April 02, 2020 2:32:00 PM CDT April 02, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA – Although it may not be the first thing that comes to mind, real estate is considered an essential... More >>
14 hours ago Thursday, April 02 2020 Apr 2, 2020 Thursday, April 02, 2020 2:32:00 PM CDT April 02, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Jefferson City Schools started offering a new way for students to receive meals during extended school closures... More >>
14 hours ago Thursday, April 02 2020 Apr 2, 2020 Thursday, April 02, 2020 2:21:00 PM CDT April 02, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA — As state and commercial testing is more available for the Missourians, the number of confirmed cases is rising.... More >>
14 hours ago Thursday, April 02 2020 Apr 2, 2020 Thursday, April 02, 2020 2:00:00 PM CDT April 02, 2020 in News
CNN - The Democratic National Convention has been pushed back to the week of August 17 in the wake of... More >>
16 hours ago Thursday, April 02 2020 Apr 2, 2020 Thursday, April 02, 2020 12:31:00 PM CDT April 02, 2020 in News
According to a new study from the University of Georgia, hot weather can take a toll on your mental health.... More >>
16 hours ago Thursday, April 02 2020 Apr 2, 2020 Thursday, April 02, 2020 12:00:51 PM CDT April 02, 2020 in A Brighter Tomorrow
COLUMBIA - The University of Missouri announced they will be postponing commencement. The ceremonies were originally scheduled for May 15-17.... More >>
17 hours ago Thursday, April 02 2020 Apr 2, 2020 Thursday, April 02, 2020 11:10:00 AM CDT April 02, 2020 in News
In this COVID-19 town hall, KOMU 8's Emily Spain talks with Greg Tucker about how small businesses are struggling and... More >>
17 hours ago Thursday, April 02 2020 Apr 2, 2020 Thursday, April 02, 2020 10:58:00 AM CDT April 02, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Two former Mizzou football players are attempting to turn negatives around COVID-19 into an opportunity for the community.... More >>
18 hours ago Thursday, April 02 2020 Apr 2, 2020 Thursday, April 02, 2020 10:28:00 AM CDT April 02, 2020 in News
(CNN) -- The last three weeks have marked one of the most devastating periods in history for the American job... More >>
18 hours ago Thursday, April 02 2020 Apr 2, 2020 Thursday, April 02, 2020 9:52:02 AM CDT April 02, 2020 in News
As COVID-19 spreads, KOMU 8 will continue to update you about the impacts on the community. KOMU 8 News... More >>
19 hours ago Thursday, April 02 2020 Apr 2, 2020 Thursday, April 02, 2020 9:12:00 AM CDT April 02, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Three separate MU Zoom sessions were disrupted by individuals who entered the meetings uninvited and used "discriminatory... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, April 01 2020 Apr 1, 2020 Wednesday, April 01, 2020 8:59:00 PM CDT April 01, 2020 in News
CUBA, Mo. (AP) — An eastern Missouri man was charged with making a terrorist threat after he allegedly coughed toward... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, April 01 2020 Apr 1, 2020 Wednesday, April 01, 2020 8:22:00 PM CDT April 01, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA – As the COVID-19 pandemic forces more people to stay indoors, the beautiful weather is still drawing plenty of... More >>
1 day ago Wednesday, April 01 2020 Apr 1, 2020 Wednesday, April 01, 2020 6:24:00 PM CDT April 01, 2020 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 58°
5am 59°
6am 58°
7am 58°
8am 56°