- Associated Press - Sunday, December 4, 2016

CHARDON, Ohio (AP) - People affected by a 2012 Ohio school shooting that left three students dead are opposing two proposed laws that could give the shooter a chance at parole - something he doesn’t currently have.

One bill - co-sponsored by state Sen. John Eklund - would allow convicted juvenile killers to become eligible for parole as early as their 40th birthday. A second would allow inmates to apply for parole after serving 35 years.

The proposals were crafted in response to recent U.S. Supreme Court rulings that deemed juvenile life terms unconstitutional, Eklund, a Republican from Geauga County in northeastern Ohio, told WKYC-TV on Tuesday. Research also shows brains aren’t completely developed until around age 30, Eklund said.

The mothers of Danny Parmertor, Demetrius Hewlin and Russell King Jr., who were fatally shot at Chardon High School on Feb. 27, 2012, are opposing both bills.

“We’re living a daily hell. It’s horrible,” said Dina Parmertor. “We’re living this every day without our sons. We think about this, every day, every minute.”

T.J. Lane, who pleaded guilty in the shooting, wore a T-shirt with the word “killer” scrawled on it at his 2014 sentencing hearing. He also made an obscene gesture and cursed at his victims’ families.

“If it was his son, his child, he wouldn’t be standing behind it,” Russell’s mother, Jeannie King, said of Eklund and his bill.

Lane, now 22, was 17 at the time of the shootings.

Nicholas Miraglia, who witnessed the shooting, said in a column for Cleveland.com that lawmakers should exclude extending parole to inmates convicted of aggravated murder and sentenced to life terms. Television personality Montel Williams has expressed similar sentiments.

Eklund said convicted killers are rarely granted parole.

The bill could help Lane, “but the likelihood is pretty slim,” Eklund said.

As many as nine Ohio inmates are serving life without parole for killings committed as a juvenile, according to the state Public Defender’s Office. More than 60 serving lesser life terms would be impacted by the law changes.

A spokesman for the Senate Republicans, who control the chamber, said the Senate isn’t likely to vote on either bill.

WKYC-TV said Eklund has since referred his bill back to the Criminal Justice committee, which he heads. The bill is expected to die in committee.

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