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Goldsboro Manslaughter Defense Lawyer
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Manslaughter is a crime of homicide that is slightly less severe than murder. If you have been accused of voluntary or involuntary manslaughter, you still have a chance to fight these allegations and defend your innocence. Our manslaughter defense lawyers at Strickland Agner Pittman will take a closer look at your case to help you determine all your available avenues of defense, from arguing for mitigated charges to building a strong case for a dismissal. We will help you make an informed decision about your future as we help you combat the harsh or wrongful accusations against you, especially in cases as nuanced as involuntary manslaughter.
Schedule an initial consultation with Strickland Agner Pittman to learn more about your defense options.
Voluntary manslaughter is an intentional killing resulting from provocation, such as in a "heat of passion.” As a crime lesser than murder, voluntary manslaughter does not involve planning or premeditation. A person may be charged with voluntary manslaughter if they committed murder by acting rashly or under the influence of extreme emotional distress.
A crime of voluntary manslaughter is a Class D felony punishable by 51-64 months in prison. Common defenses against voluntary manslaughter accusations include:
- Innocence – the defendant could prove that they did not actually commit the crime by providing an alibi or proving that the prosecution’s evidence has been unlawfully obtained
- Self-defense – the defendant may admit to committing violence, but they could lower their charges by showing that their actions were justified in using deadly force to protect their own life
- Accidental death – in such a case, the charge may be argued down to a charge of involuntary manslaughter
Involuntary manslaughter is defined as an unintentional killing of another person resulting from criminally negligent or reckless behavior. For example, crime of drunk driving that results in the death of another person often lead to involuntary manslaughter charges.
To bring forward an involuntary manslaughter charge, the prosecution must prove the following elements of the crime:
- The offender committed a killing.
- The offender killed another human being.
- The offense was committed by an unlawful act that is not a felony (otherwise this may be first-degree felony-murder) and not ordinarily dangerous to human life, or by a culpably negligent act or failure to act.
Involuntary manslaughter is a Class F felony punishable by 13-16 months in prison. It is common to argue down murder or voluntary manslaughter charges to the involuntary manslaughter level, as it is the least severely punished homicide offense.
If you have been accused of a manslaughter crime in Goldsboro, do not hesitate to reach out to Strickland Agner Pittman to discuss your next steps in your case. Our defense lawyers are deeply informed of North Carolina’s criminal justice system and how it handles manslaughter charges, and we can strategize effective defenses to help you argue for reduced charges.
Schedule an initial consultation with our team at Strickland Agner Pittman to get started immediately.