Prisoner worked to redeem himself in eyes of victim’s family

After ‘powerful’ hearing 3 decades later, juvenile lifer Songster eligible for parole

To see the juvenile lifer Kempis Songster, a man of 45, graying at the beard, seeking the mercy of a judge Monday at his resentencing for a crime committed decades ago drove home the pain of what the victim’s father lost the day two teenage runaways killed his son in a fortified crack house in Southwest Philadelphia.

Victim’s family attends alternative justice event

Supporters of juvenile lifer gather for a ‘community resentencing’

On the eve of a hearing that will determine whether Kempis “Ghani” Songster will be freed after serving nearly 30 years for murder, supporters gathered to consider an alternate view of justice and accountability. – Kristin E. Holmes, Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News

Update: Philadelphia Judge Rules To Reduce Sentencing For Juvenile Lifer

Rapper raises money to fund music classes for incarcerated youth

Chill Moody will help raise money for music classes for Philly juvenile inmates

Proceeds from Thursday’s show at Boot & Saddle with go toward the music nonprofit Beyond the Bars. Local rapper Chill Moody will headline a benefit show tomorrow night at the South Philly venue Boot & Saddle. Proceeds from the concert will go toward Beyond the Bars, a nonprofit that aims to increase music education resources for incarcerated juveniles in Philadelphia.

People sentenced just after turning 18 are appealing Pa.’s mandatory life sentences

In Philly courts, whether they’ll die in prison comes down to their birthday

Juvenile lifers are getting a chance at release under a Supreme Court decision that their sentences were illegal. Now, appeals by 18-, 19- and 20-year-old lifers who say they, too, should get relief have begun to reach the state’s highest court.

 

Sentencing children to life in prison requires incapability of rehabilitation, Pa. court rules

Pennsylvania’s top court just made it way harder to sentence kids to life in prison

The court ruled that there is a presumption against life sentences for juveniles – and that, in order to sentence a minor to life, prosecutors must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that he is incapable of rehabilitation. – Samantha Melamed, Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News