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Judge Rules Out Life Without Parole for Newton Teen Charged with Murder

Former Newton North student Benjamin Peirce is accused of killing Adam Coveney of Waltham.

A judge has ruled out sentencing a Newton teen to life without parole for his involvement in the shooting death of a Waltham man.

Former Newton North student Benjamin Peirce, 19, is facing murder charges for his role in the killing of Adam Coveney in the fall of 2010. Jury selection for his trial

Middlesex Superior Court Judge Kathe Tuttman, in a written ruling dated Nov. 7, ruled that only life in prison with the possibility of parole can be imposed on Peirce, if he is convicted of murder.

Massachusetts state law requires anybody convicted of first degree murder receive a sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole. However, a federal Supreme Court ruling requires convicts be 18 at the time of crime to receive such a sentence. Peirce was 17 at the time of the murder. 

Tuttman denied a motion made by Peirce's attorney requesting the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court answer questions relating to the federal Supreme Court Ruling. 

Co-defendant and Newton North graduate Shaquan Jacobs has already been sentenced to life in prison with the chance for parole after 15 years. Daniel Louis, of West Roxbury, was found guilty and sentenced to life in prison without parole.

For a full copy of the opinion, click on the PDF in the photo box above.

Meg Smith November 15, 2012 at 12:09 AM
That is ridiculous. Benjamin Peirce and Shaquan Jacobs should get the same sentence as Daniel Louis - Life without parole. They (Ben and Shaq), beat the man before he was shot. He may have died as a result of the beating rather than the gun. Actually, Jacobs should get a more severe sentence than Peirce or Louis considering he was on probation for larceny, assault and battery, and conspiracy to commit a felony on a 14 year old boy! All three of them are savages!

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