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Teenage killer could be set free under new California law

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© Mike TeSelle/KCRA

By KCRA Sacramento

A teenager who beat and stabbed his best friend to death could become one of the first juvenile offenders sentenced to life in prison without parole to regain his freedom under a new California law signed by Gov. Jerry Brown last October.

In 1997, Nathan Ramazzini, then 16 years old, killed Eric Ingebretsen and dumped his body in a Colusa County field.

At sentencing, the judge described the killing as "so serious and the circumstances were as heinous as imaginable." Ramazzini was given a sentence of life in prison, plus one year, without the possibility of parole.

However, a change signed into law by the governor in October outlawed life sentences without parole for juvenile offenders.

A court hearing is now set for next month to potentially re-sentence Ramazzini and make parole a possibility.

"That was our family's peace at it all, knowing we would never have to hear his name or see his face. And now, here we are 20 years later. He's been granted a re-sentencing hearing," said Emily Collins, the victim's cousin.

Brown spoke at the annual Crime Victim's United rally on the steps of the State Capitol Monday. He did not address this case, but he did stress support for rehabilitation of criminals.

"What's important is that we bind up our wounds. We remember that life is not just vengeance, but redemption and forgiveness," he said.

On the website meet-an-inmate.com, a quote attributed to Ramazzini explained how he's changed while in prison over the past 20 years.

"Maturity has found in me the polar opposite of the boy I was. I am now a man with compassion, honesty and dependability," read the quote.

Ingebretsen's family vowed to rally outside the courthouse to remind lawmakers of the need for victim's rights.

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U.S. - U.S. Daily News: Teenage killer could be set free under new California law
Teenage killer could be set free under new California law
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