Murder is the unlawful killing of another human without justification or plausible/moral intent, especially the unlawful killing of another human with malice aforethought. This state of mind may, depending upon the jurisdiction, distinguish murder from other forms of unlawful homicide, such as manslaughter.
We know that if there is an individual who is committing a dangerous felony and someone dies, that individual may be charged with First Degree Murder, even if they did not intent to kill anyone. This is also called “Felony Murder.” Defending a “Felony Murder” charge usually involves defending the underlying felony that the State claims the accused committed when the death occurred.
- First Degree Premeditated Murder is the intentional killing of another person with a premeditated design to kill.
- Second Degree Murder is when a person intentionally commits an extremely dangerous act that demonstrates a depraved mind without regard to human life and someone else is killed by the result of that act. A person can be convicted of Second Degree Murder even if they did not specifically intend to kill anyone.
- Third Degree Murder is when you unintentionally kill a person while committing, or attempting to commit, a non-violent felony.
- Manslaughter is when someone intentionally kills another without a premeditated design or kills someone by culpable negligence.
- DUI Manslaughter is when a person is driving a vehicle and has a blood or breath alcohol level over a .08 or is under the influence of alcohol to the extent their normal faculties are impaired, and as a result of being this condition causes the death of another.
- Vehicular Homicide is when a person drives a vehicle in a reckless manner that is likely to cause death or great bodily harm, and someone is actually killed as a result of such driving.
- Conspiracy is an agreement between parties to commit a crime.
The State typically assigns very experienced law enforcement officers and prosecutors to investigate, prosecute and handle homicide cases. Law enforcement typically utilizes very advanced technology, science and methods when they conduct homicide investigations and prosecutions.