LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) - A former corrections officer turned state lawmaker is accusing the state attorney general of using the juvenile lifer law to campaign for office.
The U.S. Supreme court has ruled that it is wrong to automatically sentence a juvenile to prison for life without parole for committing a major crime. State lawmakers are looking at what to do next.
The families of victims were in the audience and some want lawmakers to do nothing.
"There's not a day that goes by that I don't shed tears for my daughter," said Steven Babcock. His first born daughter was murdered and he wants the convicted killer to stay behind bars. State attorney general bill schuette agrees.
But committee member Rep. Stacey Oakes and former corrections officer accuses the attorney general of using this issue to campaign for office. "To turn this into a campaign, I thought that did not go over very well," he says. "The attorney general or AG is it standing for attorney general or an aspiring governor.
"Let's not victimize the victim by turning it in to a campaign of all about the victim," said Oakes.
Schuette says he is defending the victims and was asked whether the cases should be reviewed. "We should wait until the Surpreme Court makes another decision on retroactively looking at those cases and if it did we would follow that," said Schuette.
There was one woman in the audience who also losed a loved one but she has a different attitude, saying she thought people need to "forgive others."
Legislation to begin the review of 300 juvenile lifer cases did not get a vote this week.
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