Murder, Manslaughter, and Vehicular Homicide
If you or a family member has been accused of murder, manslaughter or homicide, you need to start with knowing what these different charges mean. While they may sound similar, each may carry a different punishment if found guilty.
Homicide is the killing of one person by another, and can be classified as either criminal—causing unjustifiable death, with punishment being severe), or excusable/justifiable—one without criminal intent to kill, as in self-defense or defense of others.
Murder is a form of criminal homicide, where the perpetrator acted with intent to kill. Many times, murders are premeditated—where the perpetrator didn’t just intend to kill, they planned the act in advance. You may have heard murder being classified in different degrees. Those degrees depend largely on the intent of the perpetrator.
The most serious charge of first-degree murder means there was a malicious intent to kill. With second-degree murder, there is an intention to kill, but that intent was not premeditated.
Manslaughter is an involuntary killing where the perpetrator was provoked or only meant to cause harm. Because this is an unintentional killing, the punishment for manslaughter cases is usually less severe than for murder charges.
Vehicular Manslaughter happens when a person dies in car accident due to another driver’s negligence.
While all of these charges are extremely serious, how your case is handled will determine your punishment. If found guilty of first-degree murder, you could be looking at as much as 25 years—or life—in prison. The prison time for manslaughter and vehicular manslaughter come with much shorter sentences.
If you are charged with murder, manslaughter or vehicular manslaughter, your defense will depend on the facts, the right investigative work, and an understanding of the circumstances. That’s why it is so important that if you need a murder attorney in Missouri, you call Taylor Defense Law as soon as possible. Our experience and proven track record for those accused—and falsely accused—of these serious crimes is proof of our knowledge and success.
There’s too much at stake to wait. We’re here to help. Call us today.