DENVER — Mothers of children in cemetery plots, others whose sons sit in cages without hope of tasting freedom before they die and sons whose elderly mothers met sadistic ends emptied their angst last week on the Colorado General Assembly.
They had been mobilized by a proposal in the Legislature that would have made 48 aging people in the bubble — juveniles sentenced to life in prison between 1991 and 2006 — eligible for parole after serving 40 years in prison.
In 1991, Colorado adopted its life-without-parole sentencing structure for first-degree murder.
In 2006, the state backed away from applying life without parole to juvenile offenders.
But for 48 people (now all adults) who received the sentence one rung on the ladder below the death penalty, parole never will be an option unless the law changes.
That’s what HB1287 would have done. It looked to grant people convicted as juveniles parole eligibility after 40 calendar years in prison. Even if paroled, they would remain under the supervision of the Colorado Department of Corrections as parolees for a lifetime.