States vary greatly in their imposition of extreme sentences upon youth. Find your state on the list below.

Alabama – 62 (previously mandatory; discretionary as of 2013)

Alaska – 0 (no JLWOP)

Arizona – 32 (discretionary)

Arkansas – 116 (mandatory)

California – 250 (Prior to 2012′s Senate Bill 9. Most youth now have opportunities to be considered for resentencing.)

Colorado – 48 (no JLWOP post-2005)

Connecticut – 9 (mandatory)

Delaware – 7 (Mandatory prior to 2013. Senate Bill 9 now provides for resentencing opportunities for most youth)

Florida – 195 (mandatory)

Georgia – 8 (discretionary)

Hawaii – 4 (mandatory)

Idaho – 4 (mandatory)

Illinois – 103 (mandatory)

Indiana – 2 (mandatory)

Iowa – 44 (mandatory)

Kansas – 5 (banned after court challenge)

Kentucky – 2

Louisiana – 332 (previously mandatory)

Maine – 0 (discretionary)

Maryland – 13 (discretionary)

Massachusetts – 57 (previously mandatory; abolished by state supreme court in 2013)

Michigan – 346 (previously mandatory; discretionary as of 2014)

Minnesota – 2 (mandatory)

Mississippi – 24 (mandatory)

Missouri – 116 (mandatory)

Montana – 1 (mandatory)

Nebraska – 24 (mandatory)

Nevada – 16 (discretionary)

New Hampshire – 3 (mandatory)

New Jersey – 0 (mandatory)

New Mexico – 0 (no JLWOP)

New York – 0 (mandatory)

North Carolina – 44 (previously mandatory; discretionary as of 2012)

North Dakota – 1 (discretionary)

Ohio – 2 (mandatory)

Oklahoma – 44 (discretionary)

Oregon – 0 (no JLWOP)

Pennsylvania – 444 (mandatory)

Rhode Island – 2 (discretionary)

South Carolina – 26 (mandatory)

South Dakota – 9 (mandatory)

Tennessee – 4 (discretionary)

Texas – 4 (eliminated in 2013)

Utah – 1 (discretionary)

Vermont – 0 (discretionary)

Virginia – 48 (mandatory)

Washington – 28 (abolished in 2014 for children younger than 16; discretionary for 16 and 17)

West Virginia – 0 (Abolished in 2014)

Wisconsin – 16 (discretionary)

Wyoming – 6 (discretionary prior to 2013. House Bill 23 eliminated the sentence.)

Notes on data:

Unless otherwise indicated, these figures are based on data provided directly to Human Rights Watch as of mid-2004 (except that we used the National Corrections Reporting Program to obtain data for Virginia, and for Alabama, we used its inmate locator system). Unless otherwise indicated, and where possible, we updated data between mid-2004 and 2009 using the following methods: post-2004 press reports were checked against inmate records with state departments of corrections; and correspondence received by Human Rights Watch from youth offenders sentenced to life without parole was checked against press reports and state inmate records.

States listed as “mandatory” have at least one scenario where people charged with crimes when they were under 18 must be sentenced to LWOP for their conviction.  “Discretionary” means that the state has no mandatory JLWOP sentences.  This data was collected and published by Human Rights Watch.

CA, IA, MA, MI, OH, TX, WA, Federal: In 2009, state departments of corrections or federal bureau of prisons sent updated data directly to Human Rights Watch or to partner organizations.

AL, CT, IL, LA, NE, PA: In 2008, state department of corrections sent updated data directly to Human Rights Watch or to partner organizations.

FL: Data provided by Barry University School of Law’s Juvenile Life Without Parole Defense Resource Center, June 2013.