Being arrested and charged with a homicide is an extremely serious criminal offense which, if convicted, can carry the harshest penalties available under the judicial system.
Under the most serious of circumstances, you may potentially face up to life in prison or even the death penalty.
There are basically two types of homicide; murder and manslaughter.
There are varying degrees of murder and manslaughter which also differ in the severity of the sentencing guidelines. The type homicide and variation of either murder or manslaughter you are arraigned and tried in court for depends upon the circumstances of the criminal offense and the evidence obtained or acquired by law enforcement.
Felony Murder Charges:
A felony murder occurs when there is an unlawful killing of a human being. Felony murder charges are usually charged when premeditation exists or the death of the victim occurred during the course of another criminal act. Contrary to popular belief, in the State of Florida, motive does not have to be proven in order to obtain a conviction in a felony murder case, just that the accused committed the murder. The degree of a felony murder charge may be: 1st degree murder, 2nd degree murder, or 3rd degree murder... 1st degree murder being the more serious offense which, if convicted, carries a life sentence or the death penalty.
Felony Manslaughter Charges:
A felony manslaughter occurs when the negligence, carelessness, or recklessness of an individual results in the death of another. In a felony manslaughter charge, premeditation or intent does not exist. Basically, a felony manslaughter is a homicide without intent and absence of specific types of criminal acts which would make the death of a person a murder charge. Although a manslaughter conviction could result in lengthy prison time, a felony manslaughter criminal charge is not subject to the death penalty.
A homicide (murder, manslaughter) conviction may result in:
CRAIG A. SONNER