Idaho Criminal Charge: Manslaughter
If you have been arrested and charged with manslaughter, it is important that you understand the charges against you and what your legal rights are. Call me to discuss your case, your options, and the potential outcomes.
Pursuant to Idaho Code §18-4006 manslaughter is the unlawful killing of a human being without malice. Manslaughter is divided into 3 different classifications: Voluntary, Involuntary, and Vehicular.
Voluntary manslaughter is the unlawful killing of a human being due to a "sudden quarrel or heat of passion." This differs from second degree murder because it is done without malice; the defendant did not intend to kill the victim.
Pursuant to Idaho Code §18-4007, voluntary manslaughter is punishable by up to $15,000 and/or 15-years in prison.
Involuntary manslaughter is the unlawful killing of a human being due to the defendant's reckless, careless, or negligent actions. Essentially, This is when the defendant willfully performed a lawful act which they knew or should have known might produce the death of the victim. A person can also be charged with involuntary manslaughter if the death occurred during the defendants attempt to commit a crime, other than those serious crimes resulting in second degree murder.
Pursuant to Idaho Code §18-4007, involuntary manslaughter is punishable by up to $10,000 and/or 10-years in prison.
Vehicular manslaughter is the unlawful killing of a human being in which the defendant's operation of a motor vehicle is a significant cause contributing to the victim's death. Unlike the other two forms of manslaughter, vehicular manslaughter can be classified as either a felony or a misdemeanor.
To be a felony, the killing was caused by the defendant's grossly negligent operation of a motor vehicle. This is when the defendant operated the motor vehicle in a manor that willfully put the public in danger of a known risk. Felony vehicular manslaughter can also be charged in cases where the death occurred during the commission of a DUI.
Misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter occurs when the killing occurred during the commission of a misdemeanor crime but the defendant's actions were not grossly negligent.
Pursuant to Idaho Code §18-4007, felony vehicular manslaughter is punishable by up to $15,000 and/or 15-years in prison. Misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter is punishable by up to $2000 and/or 1-year in jail.
A conviction for manslaughter can also result in a court order that the defendant pay restitution. Restitution is the actual financial harm caused by the defendant's criminal conduct. It is not a punishment or a fine, it is mean to compensate the victims of a crime for their financial loss. In cases such as manslaughter, where the crime involves the victims death, the restitution can be a very large amount ranging into the hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars.
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