Man serving time for 1993 killings seeks shorter sentence

NEW LONDON, Conn. (AP) — A Connecticut man convicted of killing a mother and son as a 15-year-old more than 20 years ago is seeking to shorten his 60-year prison sentence.

Now-38-year-old Michael Bernier was sentenced in 1995 for the 1993 shooting deaths of his Norwich classmate, 14-year-old David Cluny, and Cluny’s mother, Elaine.

A New London judge on Wednesday postponed a hearing on Bernier’s motion until at least March 15. The motion argues the sentence is illegal based on U.S. Supreme Court rulings and state legislation passed last year.

The state law indicates a juvenile sentenced to less than 50 years in prison will be eligible for parole after serving 60 percent of the sentence or 12 years. A more-than-50-year sentence requires 30 years served before parole consideration.
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