The Elkhart 4: Should Teens Be Given 50-Year Prison Sentences?

Part 2: This Indiana case has sparked outrage and a re-examination of the nature of juvenile crime and punishment.
9:05 | 01/03/15

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Transcript for The Elkhart 4: Should Teens Be Given 50-Year Prison Sentences?
Back now with the story of a group of friends paying a high price for an ordinary gone fatally wrong. Now, they're behind bars with their loved ones trying to get them out. Was it worth it? Absolutely not. Reporter: They knew they'd made a costly mistake, but no one could imagine how high the price. Their friend is dead. And they are on trial for felony murder. The trial is starting. What is your thought on how fair the charges are? We didn't commit murder, so why should we be tried for it? Reporter: After just five days of deliberation, they're found guilty. That is often the only alternative. And here, you have a dead body. Reporter: It was a decision this juror did not make lightly. Age should have been a consideration. That's the hard part to swallow. Reporter: At the sentencing, the loved ones react in horror at the verdict. When it came down, what was your reaction? I was crushed. For the rest of my life, I would be labeled a murderer. I think it's insane, overkill, unjust, and needs to be remedied. Reporter: The moms are fighting for that remedy. They're hoping an appeal would be granted. Meanwhile, on the inside, Blake and Levi are waiting. This is your world, basically? Yeah. Reporter: He keeps a small collection of photos. This is my girlfriend. Reporter: To keep him focused on freedom, a calendar. With dates crossed out. 2040, the earliest he could get out with good behavior. Unless the appeals can get him out earlier. They're not in here for committing a traffic violation. Most are in here for committing serious crimes. Reporter: Blake is about to be moved over to the adult side of the prison. I'm going to make a cake. And honey buns and stuff, make a layered cake. Reporter: But the dangers here are real and present. There's an incident on the adult side. Weapons team assemble. I hate hearing that. Reporter: What is this? Somebody is hurt. That tone gives you chills. It could be you any day. Reporter: Blake's high school girlfriend refuses to walk away. And had enough hope in their future to say yes to a very important question. There was an engagement ring from Blake. Which was awesome. I love him and I'm not going to leave him. Reporter: Blake's legal team is hoping for a decision, too. They think it could go all the way to the U.S. Supreme court. They shouldn't have been committing burglary in the first place. Yes. They were guilty of a burglary, and should have been punished accordingly. Serious things happened, and my friend is dead and his mom lost a son. Reporter: Where did it all go wrong? I couldn't -- you know, I guess, just being a follower and not a leader, I think. Reporter: Peer pressure was definitely at play here. A very teenage vulnerability. The brain continues to develop throughout the teenage years. The exercise of reasoning, weighing risks. Reporter: But not everybody believes that's an acceptable excuse. Teens, when they're in a group. They tend to do things they may not do on their own. Would you feel menaced if you woke up from a sound sleep and found five men? I think the answer is yes. Reporter: However, the highest court in the land has already ruled that juveniles shouldn't face the death penalty or life on parole. But even prosecutors like Nancy grace say there were other options. This could have easily been pled down to voluntary manslaughter. They would have done hard jail time, seven to ten years, and still had a life to live. Reporter: Blake, he's told to pack up his things after his 18th birthday. He's moving to the adult side. He came and told me, pack your stuff up. They act like they're not scared, Superman, but underlying, you can tell they're a little intimidated. I'm not afraid, just anxious. Just the environment, I can be put into a crazy place. But I'll be all right. Reporter: The walk is short to the adult side, but it's miles away from the life he's known. His best friend Levi that stayed back on the porch that day, already on the adult side. What's the hardest part about being locked up? It's nothing like being on the outside. This is what we see every day. Reporter: It's depressing. Horrible. Reporter: Show me your ink. The hourglass, it's broken. It's a waste of time. Reporter: And that's your sentence, 50 years. His cell mate is doing 65 years. And 50 years older than he. Reporter: Now, freedom could be years away unless their mothers' fight is successful. Today, they're making the drive to see their sons. Excitement and emotions bubble up as they arrive. Smiling as they arrive through a gauntlet of barbed wire. Hi, honey. Hello. I love you. Reporter: The rules dictate that you can only hug at the beginning and end of each visit. And the moms try to make even the slightest contact with their sons. And it's a reunion for Blake and Levi, who haven't seen each other for months. But before they know it, they have to return to the world behind locked doors. Bye-bye. Reporter: They can't undo what happened on that porch that fateful day, the mothers continue to be mothers. And we have an update, for the moms, it's a glimmer of hope. The Indiana supreme court has agreed to consider their sons' case for a potential appeal. We'll be right back. Bed

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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