Few criminal charges are more profound and potentially devastating than those involving homicide offenses. The sanctions regularly imposed by the State in cases of this nature are extremely severe, and anyone facing allegations involving taking the life of another must enlist the most aggressive legal defense available.
With decades of incarceration, life in prison or perhaps even the death penalty at stake, there is no substitute for the insights, guidance and advocacy an experienced West Palm Beach murder lawyer can provide. Contact an experienced attorney today to begin your case.
Key Definitions within Florida Homicide Law
Contained within Chapter 782 of the Florida Statutes are a series of important articulations of the law of homicide and possible defenses available to those accused of this category of crime.
Broadly speaking, the Florida legislature has defined homicide as the taking of the life of a human being by another, whether the act is accomplished in a lawful or unlawful manner. By way of distinction, murder is specified as being the unlawful extinguishing of a human life by another individual.
It is important to note that a number of different types of homicide are recognized by the relevant statutes, and they run the gamut from first degree murder as described by Fla. Stat. §782.04 down to manslaughter, as described by Fla. Stat. §782.07. Commonly charged homicide-related offenses in Florida include:
- First-degree murder
- Second-degree murder
- Third-degree murder
- Felony murder involving a killing that occurs during the commission of another serious crime
- Conspiracy with others to commit murder
- Vehicular manslaughter/DUI resulting in death
Regardless of the specific charge lodged, it is essential for a defendant in such a case to obtain the strongest, most meticulous legal advocacy possible in order to fight against what are almost certain to be catastrophic consequences should a conviction be obtained by the State.
Constructing a Homicide Defense
Given the seriousness of murder and other homicide crimes and their impact on society as a whole, it should come as no surprise that the prosecution is very likely to utilize its most seasoned, skilled investigators and legal teams in pursuing such cases.
While the prospect of defending against such a charge may seem extraordinarily daunting, it is necessary for the accused to remember that all elements of a crime must be established and legally proven beyond a reasonable doubt and that numerous viable strategies may exist with which to attack the state’s evidence.
Effective Defense Strategies for Murder Defendants
It is often possible for murder and homicide defendants to secure a dismissal or reduction in the charges faced by utilizing arguments related to self-defense, a history of abuse or battery at the hands of the deceased party or those involving mental defect or insanity.
Furthermore, undermining the State’s case by conducting comprehensive examination and exposure of faulty or illegally obtained forensic evidence can also help Defendants avoid conviction under certain circumstances.
The key, however, is that an exhaustive investigation be undertaken by an experienced attorney as soon as possible so that any and all weaknesses may be exploited.
Talk to a West Palm Beach Murder Attorney Today
A conviction on a murder or homicide charge almost always results in an extended, sometimes permanent loss of personal liberty, debilitating financial and familial ramifications and the utter devastation of numerous affected lives.
Therefore, whenever allegations of this type are brought, the involvement of a West Palm Beach murder lawyer is an indispensable tool in the fight for freedom, fairness and your future.