Sunday, September 28, 2014

Global Impact: Assailant Who Shot, Killed Two Britons to Get Review of Sentence

 According to http://www.wtxltv.comthe Sarasota defendant convicted of shooting and killing two British tourists back in 2011 will head back to court to be re-sentenced.
The story made international headlines. Shawn Tyson, who was 16 years of age in 2011, but a 2012 US Supreme Court ruling could result in his sentence being reduced. 
British tourists James Cooper and James Kouzaris, 24 and 23, respectively, had been drinking downtown and stumbled into Newtown on the night they were murdered.
As a juvenile, Tyson was convicted of two counts of First Degree Murder, with a sentence of life in prison without parole. 

Yet, in 2012, just months after he was found guilty, the US Supreme Court ruled in another case that juveniles cannot be sentenced to life in prison without parole for homicide.
"Miller vs. Alabama, a Florida case, overturned the mandatory provisions as it applies to juvenile offenders in adult court," says former prosecutor with the State Attorney's Office, and now defense attorney, Jason Miller.
The justice for that case ruled a life sentence in prison without the possibility of parole for juvenile offenders violated the 8th Amendment's prohibition on cruel and unusual punishment.
COMMENT: Based on that ruling, the Florida 2nd District Court of Appeals overturned Tyson's sentence while upholding his conviction.
Although this new ruling does mandate a re-sentencing hearing, according to Miller, Tyson potentially could face the same sentence, yet procedural law mandates that the judge, post Miller v. Alabama, that Tyson's sentence be reviewed in light of the appellate review.
A Sarasota court will take another look at the case in an upcoming sentencing hearing. A date has not been set for the hearing at this time.
At such time as Tyson comes up for a new hearing, our readers will be apprised of the results.

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