SALEM (CBS) – If the prosecution gets its way at sentencing Friday, convicted teenage killer Philip Chism will be in prison for at least 45 years.
Chism, 17, was convicted December 15 of rape, armed robbery and first-degree murder in the brutal death of 24-year-old Danvers High School math teacher Colleen Ritzer in October 2013.
In a sentencing memorandum filed Thursday, Essex County prosecutors argue that Chism should be sentenced to life in prison, but eligible for parole in 25 years.
If he receives parole then, he would still have to serve a 25-year sentence on the rape and armed robbery convictions. If he earns possible good time for behavior, the earliest he would get out of prison would be in approximately 45 years. Chism would be 62 then.
Once he is sentenced, Chism will stay at the same secure juvenile detention center in Worcester where he’s been since his trial, until he’s 18. Then he’ll move to a state prison.
On Thursday, the defense made a last minute filing aimed at limiting the number of victim impact statements at Friday’s sentencing.
The Ritzer family attended a hearing as prosecution and defense attorneys made their arguments on the filing.
Defense attorneys asked Judge David Lowy to prevent Ritzer’s paternal aunt, best friend, preschool teacher and maternal first cousin from issuing victim impact statements.
“This is not a family that has any desire to turn this into the circus. On the contrary,” prosecutor Kate MacDougall said Thursday during the hearing.
Judge Lowy denied the defense request, ruling that all nine people can address the court.
The sentencing is expected to begin at 9:30 a.m. on Friday, and both sides acknowledged that it would be a “long day.”