LANCASTER, Pa. (AP) — An appeals court has rejected a request for reduced prison time from a Pennsylvania man convicted of murder at age 16 and instead ruled that his maximum sentence should be increased.
The now-19-year-old Marcus Rutter had argued that his prison term, totaling 54 to 109 years, violated his plea agreement and a Supreme Court ruling barring mandatory life sentences for juveniles.
But a three-judge panel ruled Monday that the trial judge erred by imposing only 35 to 70 years for the murder charge. They say the sentence on that count alone should have been 35 to life.
The case was sent back to a lower court for resentencing.
Rutter and another man pleaded guilty to fatally beating a 32-year-old elementary school teacher while ransacking her Lancaster home in 2014.