-Originally Posted June 16, 2019-
A court date is set today regarding a possible updated sentence for convicted murderer Brian Bassett.
In 1995, Bassett, along with Nicholaus McDonald, was convicted as a 16 year old in the murder of his parents Michael and Wendy Bassett and his 5 year old brother Austin.
In March, Governor Jay Inslee signed Senate Bill 5064, which dealt with anyone sentenced to a life sentence as a juvenile.
In June 2012 the United States Supreme Court ruled that the eighth amendment ban on cruel and unusual punishment forbids sentencing that mandates life in prison without the possibility of parole for juveniles.
The court said that when a youth is convicted of murder before the age of 18, the judge must focus on the youth and assess their chances of becoming rehabilitated. The judge can only impose a sentence of life without parole if the judge concludes the sentence “proportionally” punishes the youth, given all of the factors.
Under Washington law, aggravated murder is punishable by either a sentence of life imprisonment without the possibility of parole or the death penalty. As of June 1, youth convictions must be re-evaluated. This includes the conviction for McDonald.
Bassett will be in Grays Harbor Superior Court this afternoon, once again facing Judge Godfrey.
KXRO will be there.