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A.R.S. § 13-751(G)(5)

AGE 

A.R.S. § 13-751(G)(5) provides that “[t]he defendant’s age” shall be considered as a mitigating circumstance.

History: This circumstance was added by the legislature in 1977, and became effective on  October 1, 1978.

What Age/What Weight:  The statute prescribes neither what age is a mitigating circumstance nor how much weight to give it.  It is well settled, however, that the age of the defendant at the time of the commission of the murder can be a substantial and relevant mitigating circumstance.  State v. Valencia, 132

Ariz. 248, 250, 645 P.2d 239, 241 (1982); see Eddings v.  Oklahoma , 455 U.S.104 (1982) (age of a minor entitled to great weight).  See also Roper v. Simmons, 543 U.S. 551 (2005) (unconstitutional to execute defendant under 18 years of age). 

Youth:  When the defendant is a minor, there is a special concern that he lacked substantial judgment in committing the crime.  State v. Gerlaugh, 144  Ariz. 449, 698 P.2d 694 (1985).  The younger the age, the greater weight it has in mitigation.  See State v. Jackson, 186  Ariz. 20, 918 P.2d 1038 (1996) (16 years old at time of murder); Gerlaugh, 144  Ariz. 449, 698 P.2d 694 (19 years old at time of murder).

Seniority: While most defendants argue their youth, some argue seniority.  See, e.g., State v. Nash, 143 Ariz. 392, 694 P.2d 222 (1985) (defendant argued (G)(5) due to the fact that he was 67 years old at the time of the crime; the court did not foreclose possibility that old age could be mitigating, but did not find it mitigating here because of defendant’s life of crime prior to the murder); and see State v. Glassel, 211 Ariz. 33, 116 P.3d 1193 (2005) (court found Glassel’s age of 61 to be a mitigating factor, but determined that it, along with the other mitigation, was insufficiently substantial to call for leniency given that Glassel killed 2 and wounded three others in planned shooting spree).

Instructions/Analysis:  Chronological age is only one consideration to in applying this factor.   See State v. Gillies (Gillies I), 135 Ariz. 500, 513, 662 P.2d 1007, 1020 (1983) (defendant's age alone will not always require leniency).  In addition to chronological age, the trier of fact should consider a defendant's level of intelligence, maturity, involvement in the crime, and past experience.  State v. Bolton, 182 Ariz.290, 314, 896 P.2d 830, 854 (1995).

The Court’s analysis in Jackson is instructive. There, the defendant was 16 years and 10 months old at the time of the murder.  Psychological tests showed that the defendant was of average intelligence.  A psychiatrist described the defendant’s family history as traumatic and marked by abandonment by mother figures.  The defendant had a poorly developed conscience, marked impulsivity and poor social judgment.  However, the defendant’s involvement in the murder and past experience belied the claim that he killed impulsively.  He was a major participant in the kidnapping, robbery and murder.  He asked a codefendant where to get a gun on the day of the murder, and broke into a home to steal one.  He attempted to carjack one driver who sped off.  He asked the murder victim for a light before pointing a gun at her and driving her car for thirty minutes to a remote area.  During this time the victim was pleading for her life.  This crime was not impulsive, but was deliberately planned and carried out, reflecting maturity and the ability to delay gratification.  In addition, the defendant had eleven prior juvenile referrals and a history of delinquent and assaultive behavior.


AGE

 

State v. Arnett (Arnett II), 125 Ariz. 201, 608 P.2d 778 (1980)
The trial court did not find age to be a mitigating circumstance and the Court agreed with this assessment. The trial court noted that the defendant was not immature, although he was a young man, and not of an age where he should not be held responsible for his actions.

State v. Clark, 126 Ariz. 428, 616 P.2d 888 (1980)
The Court noted, without further discussion, that the defendant's youthful age of 20 years at the time of the murder was mitigating. The Court, as well as the trial court, found that the cumulative mitigation proffered by the defendant was not sufficiently substantial to call for leniency.

*State v. Watson (Watson III), 129 Ariz. 60, 628 P.2d 943 (1981)
Together with other mitigation, this was sufficient to overcome the aggravating circumstances. The defendant was 21 years old at the time of the murder.

State v. Vickers (Vickers I (Ponciano murder)), 129 Ariz. 506, 633 P.2d 315 (1981)
The defendant was 20 years old at the time of the murder. The Court found that this was a mitigating circumstance.

State v. Ricky Tison (Ricky Tison I), 129 Ariz. 526, 633 P.2d 335 (1981)
The Court noted, without further discussion, that the trial judge found Tison's age to be a mitigating factor. The Court found the mitigating circumstances were not sufficiently substantial to call for leniency.

State v. Raymond Tison (Raymond Tison I), 129 Ariz. 546, 633 P.2d 355 (1981)
The trial court found the defendant's age to be a mitigating factor. The Court mentioned this but did not discuss it further. The mitigating circumstances separately and together were not sufficiently substantial to call for leniency.

State v. Valencia (Valencia III), 132 Ariz. 248, 645 P.2d 239 (1982)
The defendant was 16 years old at the time of the murder. The Court cited Eddings v. Oklahoma for the proposition that the age of a minor is a relevant mitigating factor of great weight. The weighing process is more than simply counting the number of aggravating factors on one side against the mitigating factors on the other side. While the Court did not hold that age alone will always act to require life imprisonment in every case of first degree murder, it is a substantial and relevant factor which must be given great weight.

State v. Gerlaugh (Gerlaugh I), 134 Ariz. 164, as supplemented by 135 Ariz. 89, 659 P.2d 642 (1983)
The defendant was 19 years old at the time of the murder. In view of the defendant's individual maturity and experience, youth was not a substantial mitigating circumstance.

*State v. Graham, 135 Ariz. 209, 660 P.2d 460 (1983)
The defendant was 21 years old at the time of the murder. The Court found this to be a mitigating factor, but did not give it much weight.

State v. Gillies (Gillies I), 135 Ariz. 500, 662 P.2d 1007 (1983)
The defendant was 20 years old at the time of the offense. While age might be a mitigating circumstance, age alone will not always require leniency. Here, his maturity, deliberation, and the duration of the crime nullified the defendant's age. The victim, Suzanne Rossetti, was repeatedly raped, was transported from Phoenix to the Superstition Mountains, thrown off a cliff, then brutalized and beaten into unconsciousness before her death. Age was found to be a mitigating factor, but not given substantial weight.

State v. Libberton, 141 Ariz. 132, 685 P.2d 1284 (1984)
The defendant's age of 20 years at the time of the murder was not a sufficient mitigating circumstance to call for leniency, in light of the deliberation and duration of the crime. After beating the victim, Libberton and his codefendant James agreed that the only thing to do was to kill him. Libberton also agreed to hide the body in a mineshaft and pointed a gun at the victim during the trip to the mineshaft. When the victim was struggling with James over the gun, Libberton struck the victim with a rock. As the victim lay on the ground, Libberton pointed and fired a gun at the victim's head from close range. He then slammed large rocks into the victim's head, and finally, helped throw the victim into the mineshaft.

State v. Roger Smith (Roger Smith II), 141 Ariz. 510, 687 P.2d 1265 (1984)
The defendant proffered his age at the time of the crime as mitigating evidence. The defendant was 21 years old at the time of the murder. The trial court did not find this evidence to be mitigating because it found the defendant to be mature for his age. The Court agreed with this analysis and conclusion.

State v. Clabourne (Clabourne I), 142 Ariz. 335, 690 P.2d 54 (1984)
The defendant was only 20 years old at the time of the murder. He was born out of wedlock and had a history of childhood mental diseases that required him to take Thorazine to control his aggressive personality. The Court has refused to hold this age as a mitigating circumstance in cases where the defendant was 20 years old or younger. Here as well, age is not a mitigating factor sufficient to overcome the aggravating circumstances.

State v. Gillies (Gillies II), 142 Ariz. 564, 691 P.2d 655 (1984)
The defendant was 20 years old at the time of the murder. While age is certainly a mitigating factor, the extent and duration of the defendant's participation in the murder minimizes its impact here.

State v. Nash, 143 Ariz. 392, 694 P.2d 222 (1985)
The defendant was 67 at the time of the murder. While we do not foreclose the possibility that old age can be a mitigating factor, the instant case fails to warrant such a finding. The defendant has led a life of crime. His pattern of violence against fellow human beings has persisted from his youth until the present time. In this situation, the defendant's age does not warrant leniency.

State v. Patrick Poland (Patrick Poland II), 144 Ariz. 388, 698 P.2d 183 (1985)
The Court found that the defendant's age of 27 at the time of the murders was not a mitigating circumstance sufficiently substantial to call for leniency.

State v. Michael Poland (Michael Poland II), 144 Ariz. 412, 698 P.2d 207 (1985)
The defendant was 36 years old at the time of the murders. The Court simply concluded that this was not a mitigating factor sufficiently substantial to call for leniency.

State v. Gerlaugh (Gerlaugh II), 144 Ariz. 449, 698 P.2d 694 (1985)
The defendant argued that his age should be considered a mitigating circumstance. A psychiatrist testified that the defendant was immature. The trial judge reaffirmed his earlier ruling that the defendant was mature for his age and that age was not a mitigating circumstance. Age is entitled to great weight as a mitigating circumstance, especially if the defendant is a minor. There is a special concern in such cases that the defendant lacked substantial judgment in committing the crime. Here, however, the defendant's age is not a substantial mitigating factor. The trial judge found the defendant to be mature. The defendant also had previously been convicted of armed robbery at the age of 17 and was involved in a similar armed robbery, kidnapping and attempted murder only four days before this murder. This murder was not a hasty, impulsive act, but involved considerable deliberation and cruelty. See also follower section.

State v. Roscoe (Roscoe I), 145 Ariz. 212, 700 P.2d 1312 (1985)
Without further discussion, the Court found that the defendant's age and relationship with family were not sufficient mitigating circumstances to outweigh the cruel, heinous and depraved nature of the crime.

State v. Bernard Smith, 146 Ariz. 491, 707 P.2d 289 (1985)
The defendant argued his relatively young age as mitigation. The defendant was 30 years old at the time of the murder. The Court noted that it has refused to find age as a mitigating factor in many cases where the defendant was much younger than this defendant. The Court agreed with the trial court that the defendant's age was not a mitigating factor.

State v. Correll, 148 Ariz. 468, 715 P.2d 721 (1986)
Correll's age of 24 years at the time of the murders was not sufficiently substantial to call for leniency. When age is offered as a mitigating circumstance, the extent and duration of the defendant's participation in the murder may discount its weight. Here, the Court found no evidence in the record to indicate that Correll was an immature 24-year-old. The extent and duration of his participation in the murders was significant.

State v. Walter LaGrand, 153 Ariz. 21, 734 P.2d 563 (1987)
The defendant was 19 at the time of the killing. The Court noted nothing more than this was considered along with the other proffered evidence in mitigation and concluded that it was insufficient to outweigh the aggravating circumstances.

State v. Vickers (Vickers II (Holsinger murder)), 159 Ariz. 532, 768 P.2d 1177 (1989)
The defendant was 23 years old at the time of this murder. Although age may be a mitigating factor, the statute does not prescribe what age is a mitigating factor. The Court has previously held that age is not a mitigating factor for defendants younger than this defendant. Given this defendant's criminal history, his age was not a mitigating factor substantial enough to call for leniency.

State v. Walton, 159 Ariz. 571, 769 P.2d 1017 (1989)
The defendant's age of 20 at the time of the murder was not a mitigating circumstance sufficiently substantial to call for leniency. When considering age in mitigation, the court weighs evidence of experience and maturity. An age of 20 years may be some evidence of inexperience and immaturity, but it is not dispositive. In addition, the extent and duration of a defendant's participation in the murder can evidence maturity. Carrying out a plan over a significant period of time reflects a delay in gratification, which in turn evidences relative maturity. Impulsive acts reflect relative youth and immaturity. Here, the defendant participated substantially throughout the course of the crime. He accosted and detained the victim in the bar parking lot, single-handedly executed him in the desert, and later sought dynamite to destroy the victim's car. This deliberate action minimizes the effect of his youth.

*State v. Rockwell, 161 Ariz. 5, 775 P.2d 1069 (1989)
The trial court, focusing on Rockwell's criminal acts after the murder, concluded that Rockwell's age of 21 years at the time of the murder was not sufficiently substantial to outweigh the three aggravating circumstances found to exist. A defendant's age may be a substantial and relevant mitigating factor, but to decide whether age should be mitigating in a particular case, the Court looks at a defendant's maturity, judgment and involvement in the crime. The Court agreed with the sentencing judge's analysis that Rockwell's age was not sufficient to outweigh three aggravating circumstances. But with only the pecuniary gain circumstance remaining, Rockwell's age, along with his background and the "unique circumstances of his conviction," was sufficiently substantial to call for leniency and reduce his sentence to life.

State v. Robinson and Washington, 165 Ariz. 51, 796 P.2d 853 (1990)
Defendant Washington was 27 years old on the day of the murder. The Court has refused to find age as a mitigating circumstance in cases where the defendant was much younger than 27. The Court agreed with the trial court that age is not a mitigating factor in this case.

*State v. Jimenez, 165 Ariz. 444, 799 P.2d 785 (1990)
The young age of a defendant is a substantial and relevant mitigating factor to be given great weight although age alone will not act to require life imprisonment in every case of first degree murder by a minor. The United States Supreme Court has declared it to be cruel and unusual punishment to impose the death penalty on a person 15 years old at the time of the crime, but finds no such bar for 16 or 17 year olds. The defendant here was 17 years and 2 months old at the time of the murder. He was chronologically only 10 months short of being fully accountable as an adult. The defendant's age alone is not sufficiently substantial to call for leniency.

State v. Amaya-Ruiz, 166 Ariz. 152, 800 P.2d 1260 (1990)
The Court listed several mitigating circumstances, including the defendant's age, which the trial court considered but found insufficient to call for leniency. Without further discussion, the Court noted that these claims have been held insufficient to merit leniency in other cases.

*State v. Fierro, 166 Ariz. 539, 804 P.2d 72 (1990)
The defendant proffered his age, 27, as a mitigating factor. The Court noted this, but did not discuss it.

State v. White (White I), 168 Ariz. 500, 815 P.2d 869 (1991)
The defendant was 36 years old, knew that his conduct would cause death, and intended to kill the victim. The Court did not consider his age to be a mitigating circumstance.

State v. Greenway, 170 Ariz. 155, 823 P.2d 22 (1991)
The defendant was 19 years old at the time of the murders. The Court agreed with the trial court that this was the only mitigating factor in this case. A defendant's young age is a substantial and relevant factor that should be given great weight. However, age alone will not reduce every death penalty to a life sentence. The Court also looks to the defendant's level of maturity, judgment and involvement in the crime. The defendant's participation in this crime was substantial and his actions were deliberate. He planned the robbery two weeks earlier and he alone executed the two women.

State v. Brewer, 170 Ariz. 486, 826 P.2d 783 (1992)
The defendant was 22 years old at the time of the murder. The Court has rejected age as a mitigating factor for people younger than the defendant. However, chronological age is not always dispositive of one's maturity. Other factors should be considered such as intelligence, past experience and the extent and duration of the crime. Given this defendant's work and college experience, his superior I.Q., his interaction with the trial court, and the deliberateness with which he performed the long, homicidal attack on the victim, the Court does not find that age is a mitigating factor under the statute or otherwise in this case.

State v. Atwood, 171 Ariz. 576, 832 P.2d 593 (1992)
The defendant was 28 years old at the time of the murder. The Court has found age not to be a mitigating factor for defendants much younger than this defendant. In addition to chronological age, the Court also looks to intelligence and past experience. The defendant's father indicated that the defendant's I.Q. was well above normal and he had obtained a GED. The defendant had also been convicted of two prior sex-related felonies involving children and spent approximately 7 years in mental hospitals and prison. The trial court properly found that the defendant's age was not a mitigating factor.

State v. Salazar, 173 Ariz. 399, 844 P.2d 566 (1992)
Salazar's age of 22 years at the time of the murder was not a mitigating circumstance in this case. The Court may examine a defendant's maturity and past experiences in determining whether age is a mitigating factor. Here, there was no evidence that youth caused Salazar to lack substantial judgment in committing the crime. He had an I.Q. of 95, which indicates average intelligence. He had a close and supportive family and did not suffer a disadvantaged childhood. Although he had no prior felony convictions, he had six juvenile offenses and an adult misdemeanor record. One of the prior offenses involved attacking an elderly woman in an attempt to steal her purse (the murder victim in this case was an 83-year-old woman).

*State v. Mickel Herrera, 174 Ariz. 387, 850 P.2d 100 (1993)
The defendant's age of 18 years at the time of the murder was a mitigating circumstance, but was discounted somewhat by the degree of the defendant's participation in the crime (the trial court found that defendant actually shot the victim and the record supported that finding). Although the defendant's age alone was not sufficiently substantial to call for leniency, the mitigating circumstances taken as a whole (duress, young age, dysfunctional family background, borderline I.Q. and alcohol use at time of crime) required leniency. The Court reduced the sentence to life.

State v. William Herrera, Jr., 176 Ariz. 21, 859 P.2d 131 (1993)
The trial court found that the defendant's age of 20 years at the time of the murder was a statutory mitigating circumstance under (G)(5), but that it was insufficient to call for leniency. The trial judge properly discounted the defendant's youth in this case because of the extent and degree of his participation in the murder of the police officer. The defendant participated throughout the duration of this crime. Along with his brother, the defendant attacked the officer, disarmed him and committed an aggravated robbery. While his brother held a gun on the officer, the defendant yelled, "shoot him" to encourage his brother to carry out the crime.

State v. Runningeagle, 176 Ariz. 59, 859 P.2d 169 (1993)
The trial court did not err in finding that the defendant's age was not a mitigating circumstance sufficiently substantial to call for leniency. The defendant was one day short of his nineteenth birthday when he committed these murders. In addition to chronological age, the court also looks at a defendant's intelligence and past experience to determine whether age is mitigating in a certain case. The defendant was of superior intelligence and was neither immature nor younger than his years. He was on felony probation as an adult when he committed these murders. Further, the extent and duration of his participation in this cruel and heinous crime minimize age as a mitigating factor.

State v. West, 176 Ariz. 432, 862 P.2d 192 (1993)
The defendant's age of 28 at the time of the murder was not a mitigating circumstance, particularly in light of his prior criminal history and experience with law enforcement.

State v. Gallegos (Gallegos I), 178 Ariz. 1, 870 P.2d 1097 (1994)
The Court agreed with the trial court that Gallegos' age of 18 years and his relative immaturity at the time of the murder was a mitigating circumstance.

State v. Maturana, 180 Ariz. 126, 882 P.2d 933 (1994)
The Court adopted the findings of the trial court that the defendant had not proven that his age, 32, was a mitigating circumstance in this case. The defendant was an adult male in his thirties at the time of the murder.

State v. King, 180 Ariz. 268, 883 P.2d 1024 (1994)
The trial court found that the defendant's age at the time of the murders, 26, was not a mitigating factor. The Court agreed with this conclusion without discussion.

State v. Bolton, 182 Ariz. 290, 896 P.2d 830 (1995)
The defendant was 19 years old at the time of the murder. In addition to age, the Court looks to the defendant's maturity, judgment, past experience and involvement in the crime. The defendant had a prior criminal history. He was incarcerated as a juvenile for aggravated assault, had a prior felony conviction for aggravated battery, and was awaiting trial on burglary charges. Furthermore, the defendant planned and committed this crime on his own and did so deliberately. This is evidence of delayed gratification and relative maturity. This crime was anything but impulsive. This sequence of events on the night the three-year-old victim was kidnapped and murdered shows a deliberateness that contradicts any claim of immature impulsiveness. The defendant's age was a mitigating factor, but was given little weight.

State v. Aryon Williams, 183 Ariz. 368, 904 P.2d 437 (1995)
Age may be a mitigating circumstance. The defendant was 23 years old at the time of the murder. In addition to chronological age, the Court looks to judgment, level of maturity, past experience and involvement in the crime. The defendant was living an adult lifestyle. There was no evidence of immaturity. The murder was not impulsive. The defendant took the victim to a different place, subjected her to a prolonged beating, positioned her body to be run over and tried to conceal evidence. These actions were quite deliberate. Age was given no weight here in mitigation.

State v. Roger and Robert Murray, 184 Ariz. 9, 906 P.2d 542 (1995)
Roger's age (20 at time of crime) was not mitigating in light of his level of intelligence (high school degree and certified paralegal), juvenile and adult criminal history, experience with law enforcement, extent of involvement in the murders, and the deliberate nature of the murders. The defendant's age did not impair his judgment in committing the murders.

State v. Spears, 184 Ariz. 277, 908 P.2d 1062 (1996)
The defendant was 33 years old at the time of the murder. Although this is not a particularly young age, the Court looks to intelligence, maturity, past experience, and involvement in the crime as well as chronological age. The defendant had no significant prior criminal record. However, he planned and carried out the victim's murder over a period of time. The evidence shows that he had the victim get cash advances on her credit card and prepare to sign her truck over to him before she was shot in the back of the head. Age is not a mitigating circumstance where the defendant's deliberate actions in committing this crime contradict any suggestion of immature impulsiveness.

State v. Gallegos (Gallegos II), 185 Ariz. 340, 916 P.2d 1056 (1996)
The defendant's age of 18 years at the time of the murder was a mitigating circumstance "worthy of some weight," but was not sufficiently substantial to call for leniency. The mitigating weight of the defendant's age was discounted by the extent and degree of his participation in the murder, which was extensive and prolonged. He entered the victim's room at night to fondle her, then suffocated her, sodomized her, and took the body out of the house and left it under a tree. The crime was not a "hasty, impulsive act."

State v. Jackson, 186 Ariz. 20, 918 P.2d 1038 (1996)
The defendant's young age was not sufficiently substantial to call for leniency. Age can be a substantial and relevant mitigating circumstance. The younger the age, the greater weight it has in mitigation. Chronological age is the beginning of the analysis. In addition to youth, the Court considers intelligence, maturity, involvement in the crime and past experience. The defendant was 16 years and 10 months old at the time of the murder. Psychological tests showed that the defendant was of average intelligence. A psychiatrist described the defendant's family history as traumatic and marked by abandonment by mother figures. The defendant has a poorly developed conscience, marked impulsivity and poor social judgment. However, the defendant's involvement in the murder and past experience belies the claim that he killed impulsively. He was a major participant in the kidnapping, robbery and murder. He asked a codefendant where to get a gun on the day of the murder, and broke into a home to steal one. He attempted to carjack one driver who sped off. He asked the murder victim for a light before pointing a gun at her and driving her car for 30 minutes to a remote area. During this time the victim was pleading for her life. This crime was not impulsive, but was deliberately planned and carried out, reflecting maturity and the ability to delay gratification. The defendant had eleven prior juvenile referrals and a history of delinquent and assaultive behavior.

State v. Laird, 186 Ariz. 203, 920 P.2d 769 (1996)
The defendant was 17 years and 5 months old when he committed the murder. Age can be a substantial and relevant mitigating circumstance. In addition to raw age, the Court considers the defendant's level of intelligence, maturity, participation in the murder and past experience. The defendant has a low average intelligence. He may suffer from hyperactivity and attention deficit disorder. He is capable of understanding and communicating but has difficulty with academic material. The defendant's family background was ordinary except for an incident where an older stepbrother molested the defendant when the defendant was 10 years old. The stepbrother was removed from the home and the defendant attended counseling. The defendant was adopted at infancy.

The psychological evaluations indicate that the defendant has an antisocial personality and narcissism. One expert described the defendant as violent and sadistic. The defendant acts impulsively and lacks judgment. However, an expert's description of a person as immature and impulsive will carry little weight where the circumstances of the crime indicate otherwise. This crime did not show impulsivity or immaturity. Two weeks before the murder the defendant told friends that he was going to get a Toyota 4X4 even if he had to kill for it. He stalked the victim the day before her murder. He broke into her home, reversed the lock on the bathroom door, and waited till morning to ambush the victim. He tied her up, locked her in the bathroom and strangled her. He dumped her body in the desert and covered it with vegetation. This shows deliberation and an ability to delay gratification. The defendant had no criminal record before 1992. At that point he broke into a home and stole some valuables and a car and was convicted of theft and trafficking in stolen property. This murder took place a few months later. Given the defendant's deliberate actions in committing this crime, age was not sufficiently substantial to call for leniency.

State v. Hyde, 186 Ariz. 252, 921 P.2d 655 (1996)
The defendant was 28 years old at the time of the murders. This was not a sufficiently substantial mitigating circumstance to call for leniency.

State v. Dickens, 187 Ariz. 1, 926 P.2d 468 (1996)
The defendant was 26 years old at the time of the murders. He has failed to explain how this age is mitigating. Given his level of experience and intellect, the Court gave it no mitigating weight. The defendant had considerable experience in the criminal justice system with his other felonies.

State v. Soto-Fong, 187 Ariz. 186, 928 P.2d 610 (1996)
The defendant was 17 years and 8 months old at the time of the murders. The defendant was working and living with his pregnant girlfriend at that time. The defendant's age is of some mitigating weight. However, he was almost an adult and was able to live on his own with his own family. He was also a major participant in the murders as the person who first entered the store and fired the first shots. These factors reduce the mitigating weight given to the defendant's age.

State v. Chad Lee (Reynolds, Lacey murders), 189 Ariz. 590, 944 P.2d 1204 (1997)
The Court agreed with the trial court that the defendant's age was a mitigating circumstance without any discussion. The Court further found that this was not sufficiently substantial to call for leniency.

State v. Chad Lee (Drury murder), 189 Ariz. 608, 944 P.2d 1222 (1997)
The Court found that this was proven by a preponderance of the evidence without discussion. This, along with the other evidence offered in mitigation, was insufficient to call for leniency.

State v. Spreitz, 190 Ariz. 129, 945 P.2d 1260 (1997)
The trial court did not find that the defendant's age of 22 years at the time of the crime to be a mitigating circumstance. The Court found that the sentencing judge correctly rejected the defendant's age as a mitigating circumstance and "properly found that his emotional immaturity was not a significant mitigating factor."

State v. Schackart, 190 Ariz. 238, 947 P.2d 315 (1997)
The Court merely noted that it agreed with the trial court that the defendant's age at the time of the murder, 21, qualified under (G)(5).

*State v. Trostle, 191 Ariz. 4, 951 P.2d 869 (1997)
The Court agreed with the trial court that Trostle's age (20 years old at the time of the murder) was a mitigating circumstance. When determining the mitigating weight to be given youthful age, the Court considers a defendant's intelligence, maturity, and life experiences. Although Trostle's I.Q. was in the average range, other evidence established that he was immature and easily influenced. The defense psychologist concluded that Trostle was "a follower, easily manipulated and pushed to do what others with stronger willpower wanted him to do." Moreover, his emotional development was at a child-like level and he "never has had the experience of living as an independent functioning adult."

State v. Djerf, 191 Ariz. 583, 959 P.2d 1274 (1998)
The defendant was 23 years old at the time of the murders. In addition to chronological age, the Court must consider intelligence, maturity, past experience and the extent and duration of the crime. The trial court properly found that age was not a mitigating circumstance because there was no evidence that the defendant lacked substantial judgment. The defendant made reasoned decisions during the time that he represented himself. The defendant also had normal intelligence. This is not a mitigating factor in this case.

State v. Sharp, 193 Ariz. 414, 973 P.2d 1171 (1999)
The defendant argues that his age should have been considered as a statutory mitigating factor because he was immature and had difficulty relating to women. The defendant was of average to above average intelligence. He was 24 years old at the time of the murder, had been married, and was living an adult lifestyle. Age is not a statutory mitigating factor in this case.

State v. Clabourne (Clabourne II), 194 Ariz. 379, 983 P.2d 748 (1999)
The defendant was 20 years old at the time of the murder. In addition to chronological age, the Court looks to the defendant's level of intelligence, participation in the murder, criminal history and past experience with law enforcement. The defendant was found to be of average intelligence. He completed the 8th grade and has a GED. The evidence showed that the defendant has a tendency to act child-like and impulsively. Langston planned the crime, but the defendant actually killed the victim. The defendant was highly involved in the kidnapping and sexual assaults. Since his teenage years, the defendant has spent most of his time in detention for acting out, for mental problems, and for crimes. At the time of the murder, the defendant was living in a federal pre-release halfway house after serving time for burglarizing homes on a military base. When he was charged with this crime, he was in jail for burglary and weapon charges. The defendant has an average level of intelligence, a criminal history and was a major participant in the murder. The Court deferred to the resentencing court's determination that the defendant's relatively young age merits some, though very little, mitigating weight.

State v. Medina, 193 Ariz. 504, 975 P.2d 94 (1999)
The defendant was 18 years old at the time of the murder. The Court did not discuss this further.

State v. Martinez, 196 Ariz. 451, 999 P.2d 795 (2000)
The defendant was 19 years and 9 months old at the time of the murder. Both Dr. Parrish and Dr. Bayless diagnosed the defendant with superior intelligence. The defendant had multiple juvenile referrals and convictions, and three prior felony convictions during his brief time in the adult system before killing Officer Martin. The defendant was the only participant in the murder. Age was entitled to little or no weight in mitigation.

State v. Poyson, 198 Ariz. 70, 7 P.3d 79 (2000)
The defendant was only 19 years old at the time of the murders. Chronological age is only the beginning of the inquiry however. The defendant proved that he was of low average intelligence. He presented some evidence that he was immature and easily led by others. On the other hand, the defendant had committed several prior serious felonies, served time in a detention facility, and was a major participant in these murders. The Court found the defendant’s age to be a mitigating factor, but assigned it little weight given his criminal history and his extensive participation in these crimes.

State v. Hoskins, 199 Ariz. 127, 14 P.3d 997 (2000)
The defendant was 20 years, 3 months old at the time of the murder. This mitigating circumstance was properly given little weight because the defendant’s intelligence was average, he had extensive involvement in the criminal justice system, and he carried out these crimes in the presence of his younger brother-in-law. Had the murder been committed impulsively, this mitigation would have deserved more weight. On the contrary, the defendant conceived this plan and carried it out in the face of every opportunity to make a better decision. The defendant’s susceptibility to peer pressure pales in comparison to the crimes he committed.

State v. Harrod, 200 Ariz. 309, 26 P.3d 492 (2001)
The defendant was 34 at the time of the crime. He was a mature, married man living an adult lifestyle. His actions were planned and deliberate, occurring over a period of months. As a result, this mitigator was rejected.

State v. Phillips, 202 Ariz. 427, 46 P.3d 1048 (2002)
The defendant was 20 when he committed the robbery/murder. Nevertheless, he was of average intelligence, acted in an experienced, determined and deliberate manner, and substantially participated in the crime. The trial court thus did not err in rejecting age as a mitigator.

State v. (John Edward) Sansing, 206 Ariz. 232, 77 P.3d 70 (Sept. 24, 2003) (Ring)
(G)(5) – NOT FOUND.  No reasonable jury would have applied this factor.  Sansing was 31 as the time of the offense.  He was a married man with four children.

State v. (Richard J.) Glassel
, 211 Ariz. 33, 116 P.3d 1193 (2005) Jury Trial/Indep. Review
(G)(5) found (seniority).  The court found Glassel’s age of 61 to be a mitigating factor, but determined that it, along with the other mitigation, was insufficiently substantial to call for leniency given that Glassel killed 2 and wounded three others in a planned shooting spree.

State v. (Eugene) Tucker (Tucker II), 215 Ariz. 298, 160 P.3d 177 (2007) (Ring)
(G)(5) found (youth). Tucker turned 18 ten days before the murder. The court found this mitigation compelling, but concluded it was not sufficiently substantial to warrant leniency in light of the three aggravators remaining for Victim 1 and the two aggravators for Victims 2 and 3.

State v. (Ruben) Garza, 216 Ariz. 56, 163 P.3d 1006 (2007) Jury Trial/Indep. Review
(G)(5) found (youth). Garza was 19 years old at the time of the murders. The court found this mitigating factor of diminished significance when the defendant is a major participant in the crime, especially when he plans it in advance.

State v. (Juan) Velazquez, 216 Ariz. 300, 166 P.3d 91 (2007) Jury Trial/Indep. Review
(G)(5) found (youth). Velazquez was 23 when he committed the murder. The Court afforded this mitigation little weight given Velazquez’s criminal history, average intelligence, maturity level, and the fact that he committed the murder on his own.

State v. (Julius Jarreau) Moore, 222 Ariz. 1, 213 P.3d 150 (2009)
The court gave Moore’s age of eighteen years, seven months some weight in mitigation.  Moore lacked maturity, and had stunted emotional development.  Although Moore had extensive experience with the juvenile justice system, he was never adjudicated delinquent and his offenses were all non-violent.  However, Moore was the sole participant in the murders, which tended to reduce the significance of this mitigating factor.

State v. (Efren) Medina, 232 Ariz. 391, 306 P.3d 48 (2013)
Minimal weight was given to defendant’s age, after considering his intelligence (average/low-average); the fact he never lived on his own; his prior convictions (aggravated robbery; aggravated assault); and his major participation in the murder.

 

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