A state appellate court on Friday upheld the 2012 conviction of a Richmond teenager who killed a 16-year-old boy while seeking revenge for his younger brother, who was beaten up earlier the day of the shooting.

In a ruling Friday, the First District Court of Appeals affirmed the conviction of Tyris Franklin on one count of first-degree murder.

Franklin had sought a new sentencing hearing, arguing that his sentence of 50 years to life in prison was a cruel and unusual punishment for a 16-year-old, according to court papers.

As part of his appeal, Franklin argued his sentence was equivalent to life in prison without the possibility of parole. He cited data from a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention showing that an African-American man born in 1994 -- the year of his birth -- has a life expectancy of between 65 and 73 and can expect to live to either 2059 or 2067. His is first eligible for parole in 2060 at the age of 66.

In January 2011, Franklin went to Richmond's Crescent Park neighborhood and shot a 16-year-old several times to exact revenge on teenagers who earlier beat up his 12-year-old brother.

The victim, Gene Deshawn Grisby, was a El Cerrito High School football player who authorities said had no part in the attack. At trial, prosecutors argued Franklin randomly chose to kill Grisby as payback.


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David DeBolt covers breaking news. Contact him in Richmond at 510-262-2728. Follow him at Twitter.com/daviddebolt.