Lawyers have asked the United States Supreme Court to hear the case of a teenager sentenced to 30 years in prison for killing his grandparents when he was 12, arguing that the sentence is cruel. The boy, Christopher Pittman, shot his grandparents, Joe and Joy Pittman, with a shotgun in 2001, then set fire to their home in Chester County. In his trial four years later, his lawyers unsuccessfully argued that the killings were influenced by the antidepressant Zoloft, a charge that the maker of the drug vigorously denied. In their brief, lawyers from the University of Texas School of Law argued that the 30-year sentence violates Mr. Pittman's Eighth Amendment protection from cruel and unusual punishment.
The Associated Press
South Carolina: Appeal to Supreme Court