Bill would eliminate life without parole sentences for convicted killers

BOSTON — A new proposal would drastically change prison sentences by eliminating life without parole sentences for convicted first-degree killers.

The new bill calls to outlaw the mandatory Massachusetts sentence and allow every inmate to be eligible for parole after 25 years, no matter the crime.

"I don't understand how they can come up with these ideas like this," said Bob Curley.

Curley is the father of Jeff Curley, the 10-year-old boy abducted, raped, and murdered in 1997. The facts were so shocking, Mass. came within one vote of reinstating the death penalty, even though it would not apply to the two men convicted: Charles Jaynes and Sal Sicari.

Twenty-two years later the state still has no death penalty, but there is now a move to outlaw the state's harshest penalty.

"It's an insult to people who have been victims of serious crime."

At the State House, Boston 25 News reporter Bob Ward tried to talk to the people behind the bill, but he didn't get very far.

Needham State Rep. Jay Livingstone is sponsoring the bill. We were told he was unavailable to talk to us and would not issue a statement.

Ward spoke on the phone with Annette Presti from her Florida home. In 2004, her daughter Joanne and granddaughter Alyssa were murdered in Joanne's Woburn home. Their convicted killer, Michael Bizanowicz is serving life no parole, a sentence that could be cut, if this bill passes.

"I am totally outraged with the legislators. I can't believe they would even come up with something like this," said Presti.

The bill is now before the joint committee on the judiciary. If there's a hearing, Presti tells us she'll testify against it.

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