The USA Is the ONLY Nation That Sentences Children to Die in Prison — Another Example of American Exceptionalism

So when another Politician pops off about how tough he will be on crime remember these kids. I’ll tell you who belongs in prison . . . these politicians, prosecutors and judges who can send a 13 year old kid to a life-sentence in an adult prison

The video mentions the Joe Sullivan case. Joe was 13 and mentally disabled when he was tried and sentenced, he is now 35.  The original case involved Joe and two older boys. The three boys robbed an elderly woman’s house while she was absent. After the robbery, and after the 72 year old woman returned home, someone entered the house and raped her. The two older boys in return for reduced sentences testified that Joe the younger boy “may” have returned.

The woman herself could not identify Joe but said that the rapist was also black and also had kinky hair. That was the eyewitness identification. There was DNA evidence but it was never introduced at trial. Later when Sullivan’s appellate attorneys sought to have it tested the police reported that it was no longer available.

Joe’s trial defense lawyer never raised the objections to which he was legally entitled and after the trial was disbarred for reasons unrelated to the Sullivan case.  As a boy, Joe lived a group home where he was routinely abused. He must now sit in a wheelchair permanently because he lost mobility due to multiple sclerosis (MS).

Although the U.S. Supreme Court originally decided to hear the case, they resolved not to issue a decision and let the previous court decision stand. Joe Sullivan is still in prison serving a life sentence.

 

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