WASHINGTON, Jan. 25 (UPI) -- Inmates who were sentenced to life imprisonment as juveniles should be able to file for a re-evaluation -- and possibly attain parole, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday.
In a 6-to-3 ruling, the high court ruled a 2012 decision prohibiting minors from being sentenced to life in prison without parole should be retroactive to include all applicable cases.
The 2012 decision stemmed from a lawsuit brought by a man who was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole in 1963 as a 17-year-old boy convicted of killing a Louisiana sheriff's deputy.
"The opportunity for release will be afforded to those who demonstrate the truth of [the case's] central intuition -- that children who commit even heinous crimes are capable of change," Kennedy said.
The Supreme Court's ruling Monday reverses a decision by the Louisiana Supreme Court and sends the case back to lower courts.