A 41-year-old father was convicted of second-degree murder for his involvement in a 2010 killing of a 27-year-old man. According to a news report in The Associated Press, the father and an unknown accomplice got into a fight with the 27-year-old man. The unnamed friend allegedly stabbed the man during the fight, and the victim was pronounced dead at the hospital.
Second-degree murder is “willful,” but it is not premeditated or deliberate, under California Penal Code Section 187. For example, an individual may face second-degree murder charges in California if he or she is a convicted DUI offender who causes a fatal alcohol-related crash.
Second-degree murder charges may not be as serious as first-degree murder, but the penalties are quite severe. A conviction for second-degree murder in California could result in 15 years to life in state prison.
An experienced criminal attorney will ask important questions related to defending a second-degree murder charge. Was the murder an act of self-defense? Was there a “supervening” cause? This means that the defendant’s act did not directly result in fatal injuries. For example, a medical error by emergency personnel causing the person’s death may be a supervening cause. Other circumstances for defense that an expert criminal attorney may show is that the defendant had no criminal intent, the defendant did not understand the nature of his or her act, or that false confessions were wrongfully coerced from the defendant.
David A. Stein has an outstanding reputation in defending murder charges in Orange County and is a top-rated trial lawyer practicing criminal law defense in Orange County. The Law Offices of David Stein will provide a no-cost consultation on a murder or manslaughter charges. Call 949-445-0040. Contact us today to find out how we can help you.