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NC appeals court ruling on teen life sentences

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FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. -

North Carolina judges have made conflicting rulings on whether dozens of prisoners serving life sentences for killings committed when they were teens should have a chance at parole after 25 years.

The Fayetteville Observer reports that the state Court of Appeals is deciding the case.

The issue came up when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2012 that some murder defendants sentenced to life in prison without parole for crimes committed when they were younger than 18 should have a chance at parole because they shouldn't be treated as adults.

The justices didn't say if the ruling should be applied to 88 teens already sentenced in the state. Judges in Robeson, Buncombe and Davidson counties ruled it should be, while judges in Cumberland and Guilford counties ruled it should not.

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