Homicide is the killing of a human being due to the act or omission of another. It includes the crimes of murder and manslaughter, although homicide is not a crime when there is no evidence of criminal intent. One example is a death that occurs when a gun accidentally discharges when it is being demonstrated. Other examples include killing in self-defense, or death resulting from an auto accident that does not involve a violation of the law.
California Penal Code §187 defines murder as the unlawful and unjustified killing of another human being with malice aforethought. First-degree murder is murder committed with premeditation and deliberation. All others are second degree murders, although California law treats any murder that results from the commission of an “inherently dangerous felony” as first-degree murder.
The law further provides that, under certain circumstances, the state may ask for the death penalty. These include murder committed for religious or racist reasons; murder committed while lying in wait; murder of a police officer, federal officer, or judge; and murder through the use of a bomb or other destructive device.
The crime of manslaughter is divided into voluntary manslaughter and involuntary manslaughter, where the key is intent. Voluntary manslaughter is an intentional killing that carries a sentence of 3 to 11 years. Involuntary manslaughter, where death occurs during the commission of a misdemeanor or as the result of gross negligence, carries a sentence of 2 to 4 years.
Being charged with any form of homicide presents a serious situation. The Law Offices of Jake Brower have extensive experience in homicide defense and are prepared to provide the quality representation you or a loved one will require.