"I just want to say that I'm sorry for what I did, I take responsibility for my actions in the past, I want the opportunity to redeem myself," he said during his court hearing. of the city of Bessemer, according to the local TV channel WIAT.
The law of "three strokes"
If Alvin Kennard, now 58, had received such a sentence for a mere theft, it is because of the so-called "three-strikes law", which allows to pronounce life sentences, without the possibility of parole, for persons committing a third offense or crime, whatever its nature.
However, at the time of his 1983 judgment, Alvin Kennard had previously been convicted of three counts of robbery of an unoccupied gas station at the age of 18. He was then sentenced to three years of probation.
Curiosity of a judge
Reformed in the early 2000s, according to ABC News, the law now allows judges to grant parole to persons who have committed four crimes.
This change, not being retroactive, did not apply to Alvin Kennard. The latter benefited from the curiosity of a judge who "thought it odd" that a person would be jailed for life for stealing $ 50, said inmate lawyer Carla Crowder.
Alvin Kennard's release date is not yet known. But the 58-year-old already has in mind to resume his activity as a carpenter, which he exercised before his imprisonment.