Severe Weather Alert Follow Us On Twitter #KCRGWX

Winter Weather Alert Follow Us On Twitter #KCRGWX

Current Alerts

Current Alerts Click to learn more

X Close

Live Scoreboard

Total Yards:
Passing Yards:
Rushing Yards:

Total Yards:
Passing Yards:
Rushing Yards:

Game Highlights

Scoreboard refreshes every five minutes
Click Here for our Friday Night Lights live stream and game chat

Swipe left and right to view more scores

Scores refresh every five minutes. View more scores

Cedar Rapids Teen's Murder Sentence Deemed Cruel and Unusual

  • Video
  • Photo
Video player is loading
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa -- A 16 year-old Cedar Rapids teen convicted of killing a man over a drug deal received a "cruel and unusual" punishment, according to the Iowa Supreme Court.

Denem Null, now 20, pleaded guilty of 2nd-degree murder and 1st-degree robbery in the shooting death of Kevin Bell in 2010. A court sentenced Null to 70 years in prison, meaning he wouldn't be eligible for parole until he was 69.

Null's attorneys argue that lengthy sentence for a minor amounts to cruel and unusual punishment and Iowa's Supreme Court agreed, in a ruling released Friday. Null's attorneys argue that length amounts to a de facto life sentence. The Iowa Supreme Court ruling agreed, arguing the lengthy mandatory sentence gave a juvenile no hope of returning to society in a meaningful way.

A U.S. Supreme Court ruling last year found life sentences are unconstitutional for juveniles. That ruling happened after Null's sentencing. This Iowa ruling takes that ruling a step further, arguing that mandatory minimum sentences must give "meaningful opportunity to obtain release based on demonstrated maturity and rehabilitation."

Read the entire ruling here.

Featured Videos