Homicide Lawyers in Pearland – Texas Defending Clients Facing a Murder Offense Charge
According to recent reports, the homicide rate in Texas is approximately 10.3 per 100,000 people, making the Lone Star State the fifteenth in the country as well as the state with the highest number of gun deaths. Texas is also known for having some of the harshest criminal penalties in the country. If you have been charged with a homicide offense, having an attorney that is experienced in criminal defense cases on your side is essential. Learn how homicide cases are handled in Texas and see how a criminal defense lawyer can help.
What Counts as a Homicide Case in Texas?
A homicide offense takes place when an individual is responsible for causing another person’s death, either on purpose or through recklessness and criminal negligence. Murder is one of the most common homicide offenses, and it can have varying degrees of severity. Capital murder is the most serious of all homicide offenses and could result in the death penalty in Texas. Other types of homicides can include manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide.
When a person is in the process of committing a felony or attempting to escape after committing a felony (such as a bank robbery, for example) and does something considered dangerous to human life, such as pointing a loaded gun at a bank clerk or speeding away in a getaway vehicle, that person may be charged with felony murder if someone dies. They may not have intended to kill anyone, but their actions were dangerous to human life, so they may still be facing a murder charge.
What Is the Difference Between Manslaughter and Murder?
One of the critical differences between manslaughter and murder is the defendant’s intent. With murder, the defendant knowingly and willingly engaged in actions that resulted in someone else’s death. However, when someone is charged with manslaughter, they may not have intended to kill another person but engaged in reckless actions, and their reckless behavior resulted in someone else’s death.
A classic example of manslaughter is intoxication manslaughter, which happens when someone is under the influence of drugs or alcohol and kills someone – a common offense among drunk drivers (also called vehicular manslaughter). That person knows that driving while under the influence is dangerous and illegal but decides to ignore the traffic laws and drive anyway. While manslaughter charges are technically less severe than murder, a defendant may still face hefty fines and significant prison time.
How Can You Defend Yourself Against a Homicide Charge?
Like in any criminal case, defendants charged with homicide offenses may resort to a few different defense strategies to reduce the severity of their charges or even get charges dropped. A common murder defense strategy is to claim self-defense when a defendant’s actions were carried out in order to protect themselves or a family member from an imminent threat.
Secondly, lack of intent to kill is another possible defense strategy, where the defendant can argue that they did not willingly or knowingly act with the intention of killing someone. Finally, diminished capacity or mental incapacity is another possible defense strategy, where the defendant can prove they were not in control of their actions or lacked the ability to form the necessary intent for homicide. Each case is unique, and the help of a seasoned homicide lawyer is critical to help you develop a solid defense strategy for your case.
Why Should You Hire a Homicide Attorney for Your Case?
If you have been charged with murder or another type of homicide offense in Texas, you need to act quickly. Being charged does not mean the end of the road, especially if you choose to work with a skilled criminal defense attorney who can investigate the charges, collect evidence, and challenge the prosecution’s case. Your attorney may be able to reduce the severity of your charges, negotiate a more lenient sentence and help you reach a more favorable outcome. The Kahn Law Firm, P.C. can help you fight back against homicide charges in Pearland, Texas. Reach out to our law office as soon as possible by calling 713-999-6549.
To learn about the felony ranges of punishment, refer to this article detailing the different ranges of punishment for felony charges.