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Differences in Homicide, Manslaughter and Murder

Homicide in Georgia

Homicide is a broad term that encompasses any killing of another human being unless legally justified.  It can include murder or manslaughter, depending on the actions and state of mind of the perpetrator.  All homicide crimes are very serious.  Therefore, if you have been accused or are a suspect in a homicide investigation, you need the help of Canton, Georgia homicide attorney Jeff Heller to protect your rights during any investigation or trial.

Murder in Georgia

Murder is the most severe homicide crime.  While many states divide murder into degrees, Georgia law only recognizes one degree of murder.  Any murder in Georgia carries a minimum sentence of life in prison.  More severe penalties include life without parole or death.  A person commits murder in Georgia when he or she illegally kills another person under any of several circumstances:

  • The person acted intending to kill another.

  • The person acted with depraved disregard for human life. For example, firing a gun into a house or vehicle the person knows to be occupied.

  • The person kills another while committing a felony such as robbery. In this case, the killing need not be intentional.

Murder is a serious crime that police investigate aggressively.  If you are suspected of murder, you are taking your life into your hands if you do not contact a criminal law firm in Canton.

Manslaughter in Georgia

Manslaughter is also a serious crime.  In Georgia, manslaughter can be either voluntary or involuntary:

  • Voluntary manslaughter – Voluntary manslaughter occurs when a person intentionally kills another while under the influence of a sudden and violent passion.  This passion must be caused by a serious provocation that would create such passion in a reasonable person.  An example of a sufficient provocation would be a person catching his or her spouse in the act of adultery.  Voluntary manslaughter is punishable by one to 20 years in prison.

  • Involuntary manslaughter – Involuntary manslaughter is the unintentional killing of another person.  The killing must result from illegal or reckless conduct by the perpetrator.  The maximum penalty for involuntary manslaughter is ten years in prison.  Involuntary manslaughter may also be a misdemeanor, punishable by less than one year in prison, under certain circumstances.

Although not as severe as murder, manslaughter is still a serious crime.  Because the punishment for manslaughter can range anywhere from 20 years in prison to no prison at all, the attorneys in Canton at the law offices of Jeff Heller can have a huge impact on the outcome of your trial.

Contact the law office of Jeff Heller, Attorney at Law

Jeff Heller is one of Georgia’s premier criminal defense attorneys in Canton.  He takes pride in his profession and offers fairness, honesty, and personal attention to every client.  Contact him at (678) 992-4346 or complete the online web form.