In 2010, the United States Supreme Court held that sentencing a juvenile to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole for a nonhomicide crime was a violation of the Eight Amendment prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment. Graham v. Florida, 560 U.S. 48, 130 S. Ct. 2011, 176 L. Ed. 2d 825 (2010). The United States Supreme Court went one step further in 2012, finding that it is unconstitutional to sentence a juvenile convicted of a homicide to a mandatory sentence of life imprisonment without the possibility of parole. Miller v. Alabama, ____ U.S. ____, 132 S. Ct. 2455, 183 L. Ed. 2d 407 (2012).
The Nebraska Supreme Court recognized and applied the U.S. Supreme Court case law in State v. Castaneda 287 Neb. 289 (2014) when the Court vacated Castaneda's sentence of life imprisonment without the possibility of parole and remanded the cases for resentencing. The Nebraska Supreme Court went one step further in State v. Mantich, 287 Neb. 320 (2014) and found that the rule in Miller applied retroactively to Mantich.