Dunwoody Manslaughter Lawyer
There is no more serious crime than the taking of another life, but in some cases a person acts in a fit of passion or never intended to cause a loss of life. In these cases, a person may be charged with manslaughter, and this criminal offense requires a skilled defense from an experienced Georgia attorney. If you or someone you know has been accused of committing manslaughter it is critical that you speak with the knowledgeable Dunwoody manslaughter lawyers at Hawkins Spizman right away. Call or contact the office today to schedule a free consultation.
What is Manslaughter?
In Georgia, a person can be charged with two types of manslaughter depending on the facts of the case: voluntary or involuntary manslaughter. Voluntary manslaughter occurs when a person kills another in a fit of passion that is impulsive, aggressive, or irresistible due to a provocation by the victim that would create the same response in a reasonable person. There must be no opportunity for a person to calm down between the provocation and the act of violence.
Involuntary manslaughter occurs when a person unintentionally kills another during the commission of an unlawful act that is not a felony offense. A person can also be charged with involuntary manslaughter if they kill another person unintentionally while performing a lawful act in an unlawful manner that is likely to cause great bodily harm; however, the penalties are less severe.
Voluntary manslaughter is a felony offense that comes with a prison sentence up to twenty years. Involuntary manslaughter is also a felony offense, and penalties include a prison sentence up to ten years, but if the act occurred while performing a lawful act in an unlawful manner the penalties are reduced to a misdemeanor offense that comes with a jail term up to one year.
Defenses to Manslaughter
There are many defenses available for someone accused of committing voluntary or involuntary manslaughter in Georgia. For those accused of voluntary manslaughter, defenses that could reduce the charges to involuntary manslaughter include a lack of intent or accidental killing. Self-defense is also a valid defense to voluntary manslaughter, if the accused acted in self-defense of themselves or others from violent acts by the victim.
Georgia law also provides many defenses available to those accused of committing involuntary manslaughter at either the felony or misdemeanor levels. Defenses include accidental death that was not the result of negligence or recklessness, insufficient evidence to prove the crime, actual innocence, or that the victim did not die as a result of the acts alleged in the case.
Call or Contact Hawkins Spizman Today
If you or a loved one has been accused of committing manslaughter in the Dunwoody area, it is incredibly important that you have an experienced criminal defense attorney on your side as soon as possible. Call the office or contact us at Hawkins Spizman today to speak with a knowledgeable lawyer about your case and learn more about your legal options with a free consultation today.