Vehicular manslaughter is, in many regards, DUI which results in someone’s death. By itself, manslaughter is the unlawful killing of another human being, but not done intentionally. Add a car to the equation and you get vehicular manslaughter – technically, gross vehicular manslaughter, which in California involves driving while under the influence or alcohol and/or drugs in a negligent manner that results in someone’s death.
Gross vehicular manslaughter, a felony, generally carries a sentence of 4, 6 or 10 years in state prison. For a second conviction of gross vehicular manslaughter, however, sentences can range from 15 years to life.
The added danger of a charge of gross vehicular manslaughter may depend upon some additional circumstances – such as the number of people killed, the spectacular nature of the incident, or a variety of other factors. In such cases, the prosecutor may decide to file charges of second-degree murder, which requires proof of “malice.” In instances where the defendant has a history of previous DUI convictions, prosecutors have used this history to present what they describe as a callous disregard for human life.
Any one of us, unfortunately, can be the driver of a car involved in an accident that results in the death of another person. Fortunately, most of the time we’re not driving while under the influence. But if you or a loved one is DUI while involved in an auto accident that results in death, we encourage you to call the Orange County Law Offices of Jake Brower. We have extensive experience in this field, we understand the complexity of the law, and we’re prepared to provide you with expert representation.