Midstate man sentenced to life as juvenile to be eligible for parole

Written by The Associated Press | Sep 6, 2017 10:21 AM
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(Lancaster) -- A midstate man convicted of killing a woman when he was just 13 is set to be paroled.

A judge ordered 39-year-old Ricardo Cruz eligible for parole following a resentencing hearing on Tuesday in Lancaster. Cruz was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to life without parole in the fatal shooting of 18-year-old Debbie Rivera in 1992.

A 2012 U.S. Supreme Court ruling deemed life sentences against juveniles as unconstitutional. Lancaster County President Judge Dennis Reinaker ordered a new sentence of 25 years to life. Reinaker cited Cruz's behavior in prison and the shift in law concerning juvenile lifers in his ruling.

Because Cruz has served more than 25 years in prison, he's automatically eligible for parole.

A parole hearing on Cruz's new sentence hasn't been scheduled.

Published in Lancaster, News

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