Federal judge tosses out life sentences for DC sniper Malvo

Malvo wins chance for new sentence in DC sniper case

- A federal district court judge has overturned the sentence of Lee Boyd Malvo, one of the two people convicted in D.C. -area Beltway sniper attacks almost 15 years ago, according to a ruling released Friday.

Malvo was 17 when he and John Allen Muhammad terrorized the D.C. area in the fall of 2002, claiming 10 lives and wounding others before the two were captured and brought to justice.

Now 32, Malvo has challenged his sentencing after the Supreme Court ruled in 2012 that juveniles shouldn't be sentenced to life in prison without parole.

Judge Raymond Jackson in Norfolk, Va., ruled Friday that because the Supreme Court has found it unconstitutional to sentence juveniles to life without parole, Malvo is entitled to new sentencing hearings. A hearing is scheduled in June.

Fairfax County Commonwealth's Attorney Ray Morrogh told the paper that the state can appeal Jackson's ruling.


In the years following his conviction Malvo said he was sexually abused by Muhammad from the age of 15 until the time they embarked on the shooting spree from inside a blue Chevrolet Caprice. In 2016, the court also decided that ruling could be retroactively applied to cases. His previous life sentences were without possibility of parole.

In Chesapeake, Roush did not consider those factors before imposing the jury's death sentence, even though those factors were not legally in existence. The 25-page ruling states in part, "There is no evidence in the record to suggest that petitioner was aware of the existence of this right, much less that he meant to relinquish or abandon it" when he waived his rights by agreeing to be imprisoned for life without parole. The Virginia attorney general responded that Roush could have suspended some of Malvo's life term.

Jackson based his decision on two U.S. Supreme Court rulings. He executed for the killing in 2009. "I was able to move on with my life", she said. "I realised that once he goes back to his sense, he recognised that there is a God".

She said she has forgiven Malvo and knows that he was brainwashed by the older, imposing Muhammad.

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