When Kids Get Life

Colorado’s legislature may have changed the law so that juveniles convicted of first degree murder don’t get the key thrown away when they’re locked up for life without parole, but there’s still 46 of them sitting behind bars who will never get a chance to walk free again.

One of them, Erik Jensen, was convicted for a 1998 murder in which he helped his friend, Nate Ybanez, in what the two boys describe as their only option at the time to free Ybanez from abusive parents. Since Jensen’s story first appeared in Westword he’s been featured in both dailies and Rolling Stone. Tonight, Jensen is headed to T.V. screens across the country for a PBS Frontline special, When Kids Get Life.

If all goes according to plan, Jensen and Jacob Ind, another juvenile sentenced to life without parole who was also featured in Westword and is featured in the PBS special, will be beamed into Regis University’s cafeteria on 50th and Lowell for a question and answer session where a free (optional $5 donation) reception will be hosted by the Pendulum Foundation, a Colorado Springs based non-profit that advocates for juvies convicted of LWOP.

The show starts at 9 p.m. but people will be gathering at Regis at 7:30 p.m. --Luke Turf

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Crystal Preston-Watson