Murder Defense Attorney In Tampa
The taking of another human life is a crime that is regarded as one of the most severe. As a result, it is attached to the harshest legal sentences. These cases are prosecuted vigorously in Florida. If you have been charged with a homicide, you need representation to help preserve your rights.
Explaining Homicide, Manslaughter and Murder
A charge related to another person’s death is extremely serious. There are a number of charges that all come under the general heading of homicide. Homicide is the legal term that refers to any killing of another human being.
Homicide is not, itself, necessarily a crime. Some cases, such as self-defense, are considered justifiable homicide.
Murder is a killing that was committed with “malice aforethought.” It does not necessarily mean that the individual meant to kill the victim. A murder charge is still possible if the individual inflicts serious bodily harm that causes the victim’s death or behaves in a way that displays extreme and reckless disregard for the victim’s life.
Manslaughter, on the other hand, does not involve malice aforethought. There is no intent to kill or seriously harm. Voluntary manslaughter is the charge that can be filed when a person kills another in the heat of passion, such as when they have been strongly provoked. Involuntary manslaughter is an unintentional homicide that is caused by recklessness. Florida also has separate statutes for dealing with vehicular homicide.
The penalties can vary depending on the charge a person is convicted of. A person convicted of manslaughter can spend up to 15 years in prison. Florida, like most states, has mandatory minimum sentences for certain homicide charges, such as those involving a firearm. A person convicted of second degree murder can spend a minimum of 10 years in prison; this increases to a minimum of 25 years if a firearm is used. A person convicted of first degree murder can be sentenced to the death penalty or life without parole.
You Need a Tampa Murder Defense Attorney
Ms. Jean-Pierre Coy got her start as a Public Defender in Pinellas County, defending individuals against a wide range of criminal charges. She is familiar with the court systems in all counties surrounding the Tampa Bay Area, and can help you navigate the dangerous waters of a homicide charge. With a serious charge of this nature, you need a zealous, conscientious and compassionate attorney at your side. If you or a loved one has been charged with a homicide, contact our offices for a consultation. We will work to preserve your rights and secure the best possible outcome.