By your verdict in the first part of this trial you have already found the defendant guilty of the crime of murder in the first degree. You must now determine the proper punishment.

Under the law of the State of Oklahoma, every person found guilty of murder in the first degree shall be punished by imprisonment for life without the possibility of parole, or imprisonment for life with the possibility of parole.

You are further instructed that [Defendant] was a juvenile when this crime was committed. The law regards juvenile offenders generally as having lesser moral culpability and greater capacity for change than adult offenders. An offender's youth matters in determining the appropriateness of the sentence in this case.

You are therefore instructed to consider, in determining the proper sentence, whether the defendant's youth and youth-related characteristics, as well as any other aggravating and mitigating circumstances, and the nature of the crime, reflect the defendant's transient immaturity as a juvenile; or, on the other hand, irreparable corruption and permanent incorrigibility.

No person who committed a crime as a juvenile may be sentenced to life without the possibility of parole unless you find beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant is irreparably corrupt and permanently incorrigible.

Notes on Use

In Luna v. State, 2016 OK CR 27, ¶ 21, 387 P.3d 956, 962, the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals stated that a "meaningful procedure" was required for imposition of a sentence of life without parole for a juvenile offender. Bifurcation would be an appropriate procedure, and this instruction should be used in the sentencing stage of a trial for first degree murder if the defendant was under the age of eighteen at the time of the murder.

Committee Comments

The United States Supreme Court held in Miller v. Alabama, 567 U.S. 460 (2012), that a sentence of "mandatory life without parole for those under the age of 18 at the time of their crimes violates the Eighth Amendment's prohibition on 'cruel and unusual punishments.' Id. at 460. The Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals decided in Luna v. State, 2016 OK CR 27, ¶ 21, 387 P.3d 956, 963, that Miller required a jury to be "fully aware of the constitutional 'line between children whose crimes reflect transient immaturity and those rare children whose crimes reflect irreparable corruption.' " This Instruction is based on the instruction that the Luna court promulgated. Id. n. 11, 387 P.3d at 963.

(2018 Supp.)