Episode 5: ‘The Teenage Brain Is Like a Sports Car’
Stephen is one of thousands of so-called “juvenile lifers” who have an unexpected shot at freedom today. Up until 2005, most juveniles could be sentenced just as harshly as adults: that meant life without parole, even the death penalty. Then a landmark Supreme Court decision made executing juvenile offenders illegal, and sentencing guidelines began to change. The court was swayed after hearing about teenage brain development.
Caught is supported, in part, by the Anne Levy Fund, Margaret Neubart Foundation, the John and Gwen Smart Family Foundation, and the Economic Hardship Reporting Project.
Co-published with WNYC Studios.