Pennsylvania ‘Juvenile Lifer’ Granted Parole After 26 Years of Incarceration

February 21, 2018

Montgomery McCracken Pro Bono Client Michael Holmes Resentenced & Granted Parole

PHILADELPHIA, PA – Michael Holmes, a Pennsylvania man who has been incarcerated for nearly 26 years, was granted parole on February 19, 2018. Mr. Holmes was first arrested on February 15, 1990, and on January 14, 1994, he was convicted of second-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole. At the time of the crime, Mr. Holmes was only 17 years old.

Montgomery McCracken partner Mark B. Sheppard and associate Arianna Goodman have represented Mr. Holmes pro bono since October 2016 in connection with his resentencing hearing. As a result of their efforts, Mr. Holmes was sentenced to a term that allowed him to be immediately considered for parole.  After 26 years, Mr. Holmes learned on Monday that his parole had been granted and he will be released as early as this May.

“Michael always deserved a second chance and we’re very pleased that he was granted parole,” said Sheppard. “Our team feels fortunate to be involved and we look forward to working with Michael as he transitions home.”

While incarcerated, Mr. Holmes obtained his GED in 1999. Throughout his time in custody, Mr. Holmes also participated in numerous programs and classes offered at the prison. With assistance from his family, friends, and attorneys, Mr. Holmes developed a reentry plan that included housing options, employment opportunities, and a significant support system.

“It has been one of the most rewarding aspects of my career to represent Michael” said Goodman. “I am excited to watch Michael accomplish all of his goals upon release.”

According to the Youth Sentencing & Reentry Project, of approximately 500 juvenile lifers statewide, more than 300 of them are from Philadelphia. Montgomery McCracken is committed to providing legal aid and pro bono efforts to individuals, organizations, and those in need of help in the local and legal community. Our attorneys have dedicated thousands of hours to help former inmates transition back into society. In addition, Montgomery McCracken is involved with the Supervision to Aid Reentry (STAR) program.

About Montgomery McCracken

Montgomery McCracken is a full-service law firm with offices in Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey and Delaware. The firm represents leading businesses, multinational corporations, nonprofit organizations and individuals across a wide range of industries in complex litigation matters, significant corporate transactions and challenging disputes. For more information about Montgomery McCracken or its practice areas, please visit us online at or on Twitter at @MMWR_Law.