Lionel Tate
Home Up


Lionel Tate, 16, with his mother Kathleen Grossett-Tate at his side, breaks a smile outside the Broward County jail after he is released Monday evening. Jared Lazarus/Miami Herald

Please let Lionel Tate know that I think he's a good person.  As a mother of a beautiful, intelligent, compassionate 12-year-old, I know that even the most mentally well-developed children in this age group still lack judgment skills in many areas.  I worry about Lionel's self-worth being broken by the oppressive system in Florida.  I think it's important that Lionel knows there are many people in the country who understand.  Lionel has had to suffer the horror of causing the death of a playmate and a system's attempt to destroy him.  I pray that he is able to overcome all of these things and find a happy, productive life in his future.  I was shocked to discover that such a system existed in our country and I'm glad it's being changed more than I'm glad I don't live in Florida!  I'm so thankful that the world stood up and defended Lionel by demanding that Florida treat him compassionately.  ~ Anonymous message received at  received at


bullet01/27/04 Lionel Tate leaves jail after plea deal Lionel Tate, the youngest American ever sentenced to life in prison, returns home days before his 17th birthday, Noah Bierman and Ashley Fantz, The Miami Herald
bullet01/11/04 Compromise proposed on young killers, Editorial, Fort Pierce Tribune
bullet01/06/04 Tate's freedom set for Jan. 26; Crist drops option of rehearing, Paula McMahon, Miami Sun-Sentinel
bullet01/05/04 Teen accepts, signs bargain, Associated Press, St. Petersburg Times
bullet12/30/04 Tate's case still exposes juvenile justice faults, Editorial, Palm Beach Post
bullet12/30/03 The Lionel Tate case, Editorial, St. Petersburg Times
bullet12/27/03 Prosecutors re-offer three-year plea deal to Lionel Tate,
Paula McMahon & Jon Burstein, Miami Sun-Sentinel
bullet12/27/03 Plea deal for teen may stop new trial, Associated Press, St. Petersburg Times
bullet12/13/03 New trial for 12-year-old, Editorial, Sacramento Bee
bullet12/12/03 Not little adults, Editorial, Baltimore Sun
bullet12/11/03 After life sentence, a new trial, Curtis Krueger, St. Petersburg Times
bullet12/10/03 Fla. Court Orders New Trial in Child Killing Case, Frances Kerry, Reuters
bullet04/03/01 Florida Episcopal bishops request clemency for Lionel Tate, Mary Cox, ENS
bullet03/10/01 Childhood's End, "March 9, 2001 was a day of shame in America: Lionel Tate was sentenced to life in prison for a crime he committed when he was 12. Is this really the America we want?" - Gary Kamiya, Salon