Legislation watch
Mackinac Center for Public Policy
Capitol Building

2013 House Bill 4808: Revise first degree murder lifer law for minors

Public Act 23 of 2014

  1. Introduced by Rep. Margaret O'Brien (R) on June 6, 2013, to revise the application to minors of the state’s mandatory life imprisonment for first degree murder law, so as to conform with the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Miller v Alabama. A Senate Fiscal Agency memo describes the ruling and its application to Michigan law. This bill is part of a package, and would address the prospective application of the ruling going forward.
    • Referred to the House Criminal Justice Committee on June 6, 2013.
      • Reported in the House on December 4, 2013, with the recommendation that the substitute (H-1) be adopted and that the bill then pass.
    • Substitute offered in the House on December 10, 2013. The substitute failed by voice vote in the House on December 10, 2013.
    • Amendment offered by Rep. Margaret O'Brien (R) on December 10, 2013, to replace the previous version of the bill with one that revises details but does not change the substance as previously described. The amendment passed by voice vote in the House on December 10, 2013.
  2. Passed 59 to 50 in the House on December 11, 2013.
    Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"

  3. Received in the Senate on December 12, 2013.
    • Referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee on December 12, 2013.
      • Reported in the Senate on January 15, 2014, with the recommendation that the bill pass.
    • Amendment offered in the Senate on February 11, 2014, to tie-bar the bill to Senate Bill 319, meaning this bill cannot become law unless that one does also. SB 319 contains provisions specifying the terms of less-than-life sentences for these juvenile offenders. The amendment passed by voice vote in the Senate on February 11, 2014.
  4. Passed 35 to 3 in the Senate on February 12, 2014, to revise Michigan's mandatory life sentence with no chance of parole for certain very serious crimes committed by minors. The bill is linked to Senate Bill 319, which would make life without parole no longer be automatic in these cases, but prosecutors could request it. Otherwise, the minimum sentence would be 25 to 40 years, and the maximum at least 60 years. This and SB 319 respond to the U.S. Supreme Court's Miller v Alabama decision. The bills would not apply the new standard retroactively to the approximately 350 current prisoners in this category, but include a provision authorizing parole hearings for them if a future ruling requires this.
    Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"

  5. Received in the House on February 12, 2014.
  6. Passed 60 to 50 in the House on February 13, 2014.
    Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"

  7. Signed by Gov. Rick Snyder on March 4, 2014.

Comments