When you’re facing a homicide charge, the first and most critical step is securing a criminal defense lawyer who can and will represent your best interests in court. As your homicide or murder defense attorney, I will fight for your constitutional rights to help you to secure the most personally favorable outcome possible. Obtaining a swift legal defense is essential. To get started now, please get in touch with me today for a free case evaluation at 1 (858) 922-7098.
What Does a Homicide Charge Involve?
In California, homicide refers to the illegal killing of another person. However, not all homicides are the same; in fact, this type of allegation can get somewhat convoluted, depending on the charges brought up against you. Although some are premeditated, others may be deemed accidental. Either way, you can face a hefty amount of time behind bars if you end up being convicted.
This is why it’s paramount that you speak with a homicide or murder defense attorney as soon as a homicide charge has been filed against you. Depending on the nature of your case, the judge and jury (if applicable to your case) will need to be made aware of essential mitigating circumstances surrounding your alleged crime. Hiring the proper legal counsel to tell your story and defend you will help to ensure that your case is fairly and justly handled from start to finish.
A Note on Homicide Charge versus Murder Charges
The chief difference between murder and homicide is that murder refers to specifically intending to take another person’s life in malice with premeditation. Homicide is a broader term referring to the death of an individual as a result of your actions, whether it’s considered lawful or unlawful. With homicide, there are multiple degrees or levels that incorporate convicted individuals’ particular circumstances or intentions. We’ll explore what those degrees and types of convictions are next.
What are Different Types of Homicide?
Types of homicide include capital murder (hate crimes, murder for financial gain, gang-related homicide, murder of a police officer or other public servant, or murder of a trial witness), first-degree murder (premeditated and deliberate and/or committed during other felony-level crimes), second-degree murder, involuntary manslaughter, voluntary manslaughter, or vehicular manslaughter.
Note that if you end up being convicted of murder in the first degree, you could face the death penalty, life behind prison bars with no parole, or a total of 25 years up to life behind state prison bars. If you are convicted of murder in the second degree, you could face anywhere from 15 years behind prison bars to life behind bars.
What Are Possible Homicide Defenses?
Potential defenses against this type of charge include illegal search and/or seizure if police performed an unlawful search of your property to secure alleged evidence of your crime, for example. Other defenses may involve mental illness concerns, self-defense, and accidental death.
With potential mental illness issues, you may be able to avoid conviction if you can furnish evidence that you might struggle with a mental illness or disability. Your attorney and mental healthcare professionals will work through this element of your case if it applies to your situation.
With regard to self-defense, if you’re defending yourself against an imminent threat, your attorney will gather the appropriate evidence to support your case. For an accidental death defense, if you can prove that the death occurred accidentally while you weren’t breaking any laws, you may be freed from your criminal charge.
Tap into the Legal Expertise of Attorney Michael C. MacNeil Today
If you need help with defending yourself against a homicide charge, I, attorney Michael C. MacNeil, can help.
When you contact my office, you can rest assured that the phone will never be answered by a paralegal or secretary. I will always serve as your point of contact; there will be no assistant or receptionist between us.
Get in touch with me to set up a free consultation to go over the next steps in your homicide charge case today.