Travis Fendley, facing life in prison for strangling grandmother, could be released in his 30s

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Travis Fendley strangled his grandmother to death in late 2012 moments after he walked out of the Fresno County Jail.

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At the time, he was early 20's and pleaded to second-degree murder and is expected to be sentenced to 15 years to life.

But on Thursday we learned that Fendley would take part in another hearing soon that could give him a shot at freedom sometime in his 30's.

Fendley has struggled in life for quite some time.

His attorney Jane Boulger says during much of his youth; he was the victim of unfortunate circumstances, including an untreated mental illness, "He never got treatment because he was poor."

Boulger says her client used to steal small amounts of money from family and friends to buy beer. During his late teen years, he was treated off and on for mental illness.

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These details are only a few she plans to reveal during a "Franklin hearing" later this summer.

The hearing puts pertinent information on the record so the parole board can use the background information when they consider whether an inmate should be set free.

Inmates eligible for the hearings must be under 26 when the crime is committed and exposed to 15 years to life or longer.

She intends to ask a doctor to testify and some family members.

"Because you are young. Like with a psychiatrist, they could discuss the brain development of young me," said Boulger. "It doesn't finish developing at 18- but we consider them adults."

Boulger says her client was not drinking at the time he marched over to his grandmother's house because he was just released from the Fresno County Jail.

"She had a restraining order because of the thefts, but she is his grandmother, so of course she let him in because that's what grandmas do, and she paid a very high price for it."

Boulger says that said Fendley is psychotic and needs intense treatment in prison to prepare him for later in life, so he is a productive person who isn't violent.

The sentence is expected to be formalized in August, the same day of the Franklin hearing.
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