There might not be anything more heart stopping than hearing you’re under investigation for or have been accused of murder. The most important thing you can do when you are approached by the police or you’ve been arrested is to contact a York, Pa., murder defense attorney who can protect your rights.
What to do if you’ve been accused of murder
As soon as you’ve been arrested and charged with murder, the prosecution has already been working to build a case against you. They believe they already have the evidence needed to prosecute you for this alleged crime.
You should never be questioned by police or anyone else present about these accusations without a criminal defense lawyer from Korey Leslie Attorney-at-Law. Even if you think your story is believable and a case can’t be built against you, it can be nearly impossible to navigate a murder case on your own. You’re in a very dangerous position and should not trust anyone other than your murder defense attorney.
Variations of murder charges in Pennsylvania
A criminal homicide charge in Pennsylvania is the unlawful death of another human, and it includes three types of murder and two types of manslaughter.
First degree murder: If you’ve been charged with first degree murder, you could face the death penalty or life in prison without parole. You also could be charged with first degree murder if you paid someone to carry out the act, if the victim was held for ransom or if the victim was scheduled to testify in a felony crime. First degree murder cases are premeditated or intentional acts.
Second degree murder: Second degree murder is committed when the defendant is taking part in a felony, either as the principal instigator or as an accomplice. If someone robs a bank or a gas station and someone is killed during the robbery, the charge would be second degree murder. A conviction is punishable by life in prison without parole.
Third degree murder: Third degree murder defines all other murders, involves malice, and is punishable by 20 to 40 years in prison, depending on the severity of a crime. Someone might be charged with third degree murder if he fires a gun and kills someone, even if it wasn't intentional.
Voluntary manslaughter: Voluntary manslaughter is the intentional killing of an individual without lawful justification, if at the time of the killing the defendant is acting out against something the victim said or did to anger them. It is a first degree felony punishable by 10 to 20 years in prison.
Involuntary manslaughter: Involuntary manslaughter is causing the death of another person in a reckless or negligent manner.
Call a criminal homicide attorney to defend your case
Don’t fight a criminal homicide investigation on your own. Even early on in the process, too much can be said to help the prosecution build a case against you. Call the attorneys at Korey Leslie Attorney-at-Law to find out how our experienced murder defense attorneys can help you get the legal protection you deserve.