What is Heat of Passion Manslaughter? What is the Difference between First Degree Murder and Voluntary Manslaughter?
“Heat of passion” voluntary manslaughter in Philadelphia requires the jury to find that at the time of the killing, the defendant acted under a sudden and intense passion resulting from serious provocation. Passion in terms of voluntary manslaughter means anger and terror that is so intense, strong, and high that it prevents the defendant from…
Philadelphia Homicide and Manslaughter Attorney
Pennsylvania law looks at an accidental death or homicide in the heat of the moment or passion without intent to kill differently than murder. The laws of our Commonwealth define voluntary manslaughter as taking the life of another person while under sudden or intense emotions that were provoked by the person who lost their life. In these cases, a person charged with voluntary manslaughter cannot usually think in a clear or rational manner as their judgement is clouded by fear, anger or another strong emotion.
Voluntary manslaughter may also be considered when the killer intended to take the life of one person, but negligently or accidentally took the life of another. Voluntary manslaughter may also be charged if a person took a life in an action they truly believed to be justified (such as self defense) but that belief or opinion is not considered reasonable under the law.
Voluntary Manslaughter is a first-degree felony under Pennsylvania law. Consequences can be quite severe with a potential sentence of up to 20 years in prison.
Vehicular Homicide is Sometimes Referred to as Vehicular Manslaughter
Unintentionally taking the life of another while driving a car is charged as Vehicular homicide in Pennsylvania, although it is sometimes referred to as Vehicular Manslaughter. Vehicular manslaughter is a form of criminal homicide in Pennsylvania, and is generally consistent with manslaughter depending upon the circumstances surrounding the accident and the prior DUI or homicide record of the driver.
Defending Manslaughter Charges in Philadelphia
Manslaughter is a serious charge, and Wimmer Criminal Defense Law will work aggressively to challenge the process on behalf of our clients at every step along the way. Lauren Wimmer is an experienced criminal defense lawyer who will investigate what has happened and review every component of the prosecution’s case against you. We review the evidence, testimony of any witnesses and the actions of law enforcement and laboratory personnel.
Does the evidence and testimony of witnesses match the charge of voluntary manslaughter? Were you genuinely defending yourself? There are many strategies to defend voluntary manslaughter allegations, and after serving the judges in Philadelphia’s homicide court for several years, Lauren Wimmer knows which tactics are usually successful and which are not. We work to get the charges against you reduced or dismissed altogether.
Contact an Experienced Philadelphia Voluntary Manslaughter Lawyer
Contact the experienced criminal homicide and voluntary manslaughter defense firm of Wimmer Criminal Defense Law or call Lauren Wimmer for a confidential and free consultation at (215) 712-1212. There are critical deadlines to be met and notices which must be filed in a timely manner. It is important to take immediate action to put us to work on your case as soon as possible so we can help to achieve the best possible outcome.
If you or someone you love is charged with voluntary manslaughter the potential prison sentence can be up to 20 years. Learn how Wimmer Criminal Defense Law can make a substantial contribution in your case to reduce the charges you actually face as well as the associated consequences.