Iowa Man Sentenced to Life as Teen May Get Reprieve

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Supreme Court is hearing arguments in a case that could free a man imprisoned for life for his involvement in a 1986 Council Bluffs parking lot brawl in which another man was killed.

 

The court will consider whether 44-year-old Jeffrey Ragland is eligible for parole now or must spend decades more in prison.

Ragland is among more than three dozen teen killers given a chance to seek parole following a U.S. Supreme Court decision last June that says states cannot automatically sentence juveniles to life.

In July, Gov. Terry Branstad ordered people sentenced to life for juvenile crimes to remain imprisoned for 60 years before seeking parole. A district court judge ruled Ragland is eligible now.

The court will decide whether Ragland gets a parole board hearing.

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