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Knox County criminal defense attorney reckless homicide

While it may seem like an excuse, there is something to say about being in the wrong place at the wrong time. The words “murder” and “homicide” raise immediate red flags, often bringing gun violence to mind in this day and age. However, what if you caused a car accident and the other driver’s injuries were fatal? Or perhaps a weapon malfunction while hunting led to your friend’s death? These are two examples of unintentionally causing the death of another person, also known as involuntary manslaughter. The state of Tennessee recognizes that not all deaths, or crimes, are one in the same, and the law reflects this by dividing involuntary manslaughter charges into three separate criminal categories.

Reckless and Criminally Negligent Homicide

Although these two are technically separate charges, the legal descriptions are fairly similar. The state loosely defines criminal negligence and reckless homicide in order to leave room for a number of criminal behaviors to fall within these categories. Reckless homicide occurs when a person is aware of the risks of serious injury or death that their actions pose to the other person, but he or she continues to act and the other person dies as a result. A common example of this is the accidental discharging of a firearm. A more rare occurrence is playing a dangerous game like Russian roulette, where both parties are aware of the potential risks, and one of the individuals dies in the process. 

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Blount County reckless homicide defense attorney

As in every state across the country, murder is considered one of the most serious crimes that a person can commit in Tennessee. When people hear the term murder, they often imagine one person killing the other out of spite or in a violent manner. While this can be the case, there are many other ways that someone can kill another – and the law recognizes this. Tennessee legislation identifies six distinct forms of homicide to show that not all crimes are equal, and neither are their consequences. If you are facing any type of homicide charge, a skilled criminal defense attorney can use these various classifications to your advantage to determine how charges may be reduced or even dismissed altogether. Understanding the various charges is a good first step in formulating a strong defense strategy.

Homicide Classifications in Tennessee

  1. First-Degree Murder: This form of murder refers to the premeditated and intentional killing of another person. In other words, someone must have thought about killing the individual and intentionally done so to have committed first-degree murder. This is the most serious charge that one can receive, resulting in the death penalty or life imprisonment with or without parole.

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