The taking of another person’s life is a serious offense in any situation, but if the death was not intentional, the charges will not be as grave as those involving the purposeful attempt to take someone’s life. If someone has been purposefully killed, the person responsible will usually be charged with murder, whether or not the attack was planned before hand. Alternatively, if the death was accidental, even if it was caused by a situation that easily could have been prevented, the person responsible will most often be charged with manslaughter. If an accidental death involved a vehicle of some kind, then the resulting charge will generally be vehicular manslaughter. In some cases, if you intentionally kill someone, but it is in the heat of passion, your lawyer may be able to argue for voluntary manslaughter. If the death was accidental but you were negligent, the crime may be involuntary manslaughter.
If you have been charged with any of these crimes, it is critical to remember that anything you say can be used against you and there is often a fine line between murder and a manslaughter charges. A skilled Vista homicide attorney can help protect your rights and may even be able to have murder charges reduced to manslaughter. If you have been accused of murder, manslaughter or vehicular manslaughter, please call Peter M. Liss at (760) 643-4050 as soon as possible to discuss your case.
Creative Commons Image by Benjamin A. Smith