Homicide is a legal term that refers to the act of causing someone’s death. Homicide can refer to intentionally killing someone (also known as murder). However, you can also be charged with homicide if you cause someone’s death by mistake as well. There are different degrees of homicide, with different types of penalties for each different type, but all types of homicide can be charged as felonies and can lead to more than a year of jail time… and sometimes, much more.
If you or a loved one has been accused of homicide, you must have a lawyer as soon as possible. Your lawyer can argue for bail- which may not always be granted or which may be prohibitively high- and your lawyer can help you to raise a defense, introduce doubt as to your guilt, or plead to lesser charges. The only chance of a favorable outcome from homicide charges is to get the advice of a lawyer, and the experienced criminal defense law firm of Lawrence R. Dworkin can help.
In the state of Pennsylvania, you may be found guilty of homicide if you cause the death of another person. You may face these charges if you intentionally and knowingly cause this death, or if you negligently and recklessly cause this death. There are different charges brought for different types of homicides, depending upon whether you intentionally cause the death or whether you negligently cause the death. Other factors, such as the level of planning that goes into the act that caused the death, can also play a role in determining what charges you face.
The different types of potential homicide charges that may be brought include:
When you are facing charges for a homicide crime, you may be going to jail for a long time if convicted- especially if you are accused of murder. However, there are many different defenses you can raise and many ways that a criminal defense attorney can help you. For instance, your criminal defense lawyer may be able to prove lack of intent, or self defense. Your attorney may also be able to introduce reasonable doubt as to your guilt, which can result in an acquittal since the prosecutor has the burden of proving your guilt. Finally, a criminal defense lawyer may be able to help you to plead down to lesser charges, such as accepting a voluntary manslaughter conviction instead of a charge of murder.
The right course of action when facing homicide charges is going to depend on your particular circumstances and the evidence that the prosecutor has, as well as the potential defenses available to you. To learn more about how you can achieve the most favorable outcome if you or a loved one is facing homicide charges, contact the criminal defense law firm of Lawrence R. Dworkin today at 610-566-0610 or using our online form.