For Those Charged With a Crime
Legal Defense Against Manslaughter Charges
Defending You From Criminal Charges in Fort Bend County
An event that causes another person’s death often produces a protracted legal battle that requires the legal representation of a Texas licensed criminal defense attorney. This is especially true when there is a fine, gray legal line between the charge being murder or the charge being manslaughter. One of the reasons for the difficult legal battle that ensues is because a manslaughter charge in Texas does not differentiate between voluntary and involuntary manslaughter.
To win a manslaughter conviction, the prosecution team must prove “Beyond a reasonable doubt” the defendant recklessly caused the death of an individual. As a second degree felony, manslaughter in Texas can trigger a jail sentence of between two and 20 years and/or a fine not to exceed $10,000. A charge of manslaughter does not require the prosecution to prove the defendant intended to commit the crime. The only legal requirement is for the prosecution to prove the defendant had reckless conduct.
The severe punishment handed out for a manslaughter conviction combined with a low standard of probable cause to be charged with the offense means anyone charged with the crime of manslaughter should consult with a Texas licensed criminal defense lawyer.
Defense Against Manslaughter Charges in Texas
Because intent is not part of a manslaughter charge, prosecutors do not have to prove a defendant had malicious intent to kill someone.
As part of their defense against manslaughter charges, criminal defense attorneys typically try to plant the seeds of reasonable doubt into the minds of a jury during voir dire.
We prepare for a manslaughter trial by obtaining physical evidence that absolves our clients of manslaughter charges. Physical evidence can be time stamped video footage of a client somewhere else at the time of the alleged crime. We may also call witnesses to the stand to provide alibis for our clients. DNA evidence extracted from an instrument used during an altercation can also exonerate manslaughter defendants.
Accidents sometimes occur that lead to the death of another person. If we can prove an accident caused the death of the victim in your case, we have removed recklessness from the legal conversation. For example, let’s say a baseball hitter splinters a bat that came in contact with a 90 miles per hour fastball and one of the splinters impales the pitcher. Days later the pitcher suddenly dies, but the hitter obviously was not responsible for the bat splintering. In fact, the victim might have a strong product liability case.
Not Enough Evidence
Although it is true manslaughter is an easier charge to prove than a murder charge, there is still the possibility the prosecution will not present sufficient evidence that leads to a conviction. Criminal defense lawyer Adam Capetillo will challenge the validity of the prosecution team’s evidence by performing a thorough investigation of the incident and by cross examining every witness called to the stand by the prosecution.
Violation of Your Rights
In haste to book a suspect in a manslaughter case, a law enforcement officer might commit one or more violations of the Constitution. Law enforcement officers must obtain search warrants based on the probable cause that someone committed a crime. If you were a victim of an illegal search and seizure, we can use that to prompt the judge presiding over your case to throw out the manslaughter charge. You also have the right not to incriminate yourself and if you do, we can use that in court as well.
Contact Criminal Defense Lawyer Adam Capetillo
A manslaughter charge can make a long lasting negative impact on your life. A second degree felony conviction will show up on your background report, which will limit the number of job options you have. You can also expect to have a difficult time obtaining affordable housing. If you face a manslaughter charge, you should immediately consult with highly skilled criminal defense lawyer Adam Capetillo.
You can schedule a free initial consultation with criminal defense attorney Adam Capetillo by calling our law firm at 346-420-4069 or by submitting our convenient online contact form.