Lawrence NJ Manslaughter Attorneys
With Offices in Trenton and Pennington, NJ
Although the most serious form of homicide is first degree murder, the reality is that any homicide charge carries the potential for serious prison time. Even if you accidentally caused the death of another person, you can be charged with homicide in the form of manslaughter. In the worst cases, you could be incarcerated for the remainder of your life. That’s why you need an attorney who is committed to proving your innocence. An experienced attorney can also defend you by putting reasonable doubt in the minds of the judge or jury.
Kamensky Cohen & Riechelson is a highly regarded law firm that has been representing clients in New Jersey since 1972. During that time, we have successfully defended clients against manslaughter charges throughout Mercer County, NJ, including Robbinsville, Hightstown, and East Windsor. Additionally, our litigation team includes a New Jersey Certified Trial Attorney and a New Jersey “Super Lawyer,” so we definitely know how to win in the courtroom. Call KCR today to speak with one of our experienced criminal defense attorneys.
N.J.S.A. 2C:11-4: Manslaughter Charges in Mercer County New Jersey
Manslaughter charges in New Jersey are governed by N.J.S.A. 2C:11-4. Although certain forms of manslaughter involve an intentional killing, the crime can be distinguished from murder. A major distinction between manslaughter and murder is that manslaughter is never premeditated or planned.
There are two main types of manslaughter in New Jersey: voluntary manslaughter and involuntary manslaughter. The statute labels voluntary manslaughter as “reckless manslaughter,” while involuntary manslaughter is labeled “passion / provocation manslaughter.”
Fighting a Voluntary Manslaughter Charge in Princeton NJ
Like murder, voluntary manslaughter involves a killing committed by a person who intended to commit the killing. The main distinction between murder and voluntary manslaughter is that the defendant was provoked. Voluntary manslaughter occurs when a person reacts in the heat of passion and kills someone. As a result, it is often called a “crime of passion.” A common example of the kind of provocation needed to get a murder charge downgraded to voluntary manslaughter would be when a person discovers their spouse having an affair; sometimes, the person responds irrationally and violently.
In order to get a murder charge reduced to voluntary manslaughter, an attorney must prove that:
- The defendant was “provoked” into committing the killing
- The defendant did not have enough time to “cool off” between the provocation and the killing
- The provocation impassioned, or severely agitated, the defendant to such an extent that they became mentally or emotionally disturbed
- The defendant did not actually cool off before committing the killing
Involuntary Manslaughter Charge in Hopewell NJ
Involuntary manslaughter occurs when a person negligently causes the death of another person. The main distinction between involuntary manslaughter and murder is that a person who commits involuntary manslaughter never has the intent to kill.
Most of the time, involuntary manslaughter charges arise when a person acts recklessly and causes the death of someone else. NJ courts have interpreted “recklessness” in this context to mean that the defendant consciously disregarded a substantial and unjustifiable risk of death. Courts typically use a reasonable person standard to determine whether the defendant should have been aware of the dangers posed by their conduct. In other words, courts consider what a reasonable person would have done under similar circumstances.
Penalties for a Manslaughter Conviction in Trenton NJ
Manslaughter is ordinarily classified as a second degree felony. This means that anyone convicted of manslaughter in the State of New Jersey is subject to a sentence of 5–10 years in NJ State Prison. Moreover, manslaughter carries a presumption of incarceration; a manslaughter conviction will result in a minimum mandatory term of imprisonment.
Free Consultation with Hamilton NJ Manslaughter Lawyers
The criminal defense lawyers at Kamensky Cohen & Riechelson understand that your freedom is at stake. That’s why we will do whatever it takes to beat your manslaughter charges. Call us now to discuss your case with a member of our litigation team, or email us to schedule a free consultation at our offices in Trenton or Pennington.