The State of Arizona does not classify the crime of manslaughter as voluntary or involuntary. It is either “manslaughter” or “negligent homicide.” In Arizona, there are four classifications of homicide: first degree murder, second degree murder, negligent homicide and manslaughter.
How to Find the Phoenix Criminal Defense Attorney
If you have been arrested for manslaughter in Arizona, you can take your chances with a public defender or cheap criminal lawyer in Phoenix. You might enjoy spending a few of years on an all-expenses paid vacation behind bars. But, if you want a room with a better view than concrete walls, you may want to hire the best Phoenix criminal defense attorney. Where do you find the best Phoenix criminal defense attorney? Look for one that:
- has 30 years of experience as a Phoenix manslaughter lawyer
- is a former prosecutor so he knows how it works in the inside
- has a perfect “10” rating on avvo.com
- Is highly recommended by former clients and other Phoenix manslaughter lawyers
Circumstances that Define Manslaughter in Arizona
There are five situations of homicide that may be classified as manslaughter.
- Commits second degree murder under coercion. It is described as killing another person while being forced to do so through the “threat or use of unlawful deadly physical force” of another person.
- Commits second degree murder as a crime of passion. This means that the crime was not premeditated, but is instead the result of “sudden quarrel or heat of passion or as a result of provocation.”
- Causes the death of another through recklessness.
- Deliberately assists another person to commit suicide. Assisted suicide, even if performed by medical professionals, is illegal and considered manslaughter in Arizona.
- Causes the death of fetus by intentionally or unintentionally injuring the mother, with the exception of the following:
- Those who performed authorized abortions
- Those who provided medical services on the mother or child
- The mother of the unborn child
In these situations, the law prevents the charge of homicide if the mother has either consented to medical services or has herself performed the act.
Penalties for Manslaughter in Arizona
Manslaughter is a class 2 felony in Arizona. There are many factors that affect the sentencing of a manslaughter conviction, including prior felonies, and whether or not the manslaughter charge is considered a dangerous offense, possible sentencing range are as follows:
- Mitigated sentence: 3 years
- Minimum sentence: 4 years
- Presumptive sentence: 5 years
- Maximum sentence: 10 years
- Aggravated sentence: 12.5 years
For offenders who have prior felonies, or if it is ruled that the manslaughter was a dangerous offense, which occurs if a deadly weapon was used during the incident, then the sentencing can go well beyond 12.5 years in prison. A manslaughter sentence can also include probation, jail time and/or fines and surcharges.
In addition to jail time and fines, felonies in Arizona come with consequences like ineligibility to pursue certain education or professional opportunities or government assistance and loss of certain civil rights.
Let Howard Snader Law help you
If you are facing charges of manslaughter in Arizona, it is strongly advised that you get in touch with a skilled lawyer who can evaluate your case and prepare all possible defenses.
At Howard Snader Law, we will work with you to reduce your charges and keep you out of jail. Talk to our experienced Phoenix criminal defense attorneys now.