St. Thomas Law Review


Jamie L. Wilson

First Page


Document Type



This Comment addresses the implications on victim's families and society regarding the resentencing and future sentencing of juveniles who have been convicted of murder. Specifically, this Comment will focus on the factors judges are required to consider before a life sentence is imposed, while proposing a solution to balance the factors in order to ensure victim's rights are not overlooked. Part II explores the required juvenile sentencing factors mandated by the United States Supreme Court in Miller, and further explores Florida's response as evidenced in Falcon, Atwell v. State, and Landrum v. State. Part II further discusses Florida's previous statutory scheme and the shift from mandatory life sentences to the application of the Miller-required factors prior to life sentences being imposed on juveniles. Part III discusses the issues stemming from federal and Florida judicial decisions, particularly the effect of resentencing hearings and the newly required factors on our society, the court system, but most importantly, the victims' families. Part IV proposes an inclusive solution by suggesting a more equal balance between defendant's and victim's rights to the Miller-required factors, which judges will take into consideration during sentencing. Part V concludes by explaining that although Florida is bound by its federal precedent, the factors considered are not exhaustive, and courts should adopt a more victim-oriented approach when sentencing juveniles who have been convicted of murder.