How an Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney in San Diego Can Help
Whether you are potentially facing an arrest, trial, or investigation involving the United States Attorney’s Office, District Attorney’s Office, FBI, IRS, DEA, or Attorney General’s Office or the San Diego police, you need to take steps to protect yourself. Consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney to formulate the best and most aggressive defense.
We have you covered.
Our criminal defense attorneys understand how the court system works and aid people facing criminal charges in San Diego. We know that those who have been charged with a crime have a lot at stake. That is why we are dedicated to representing clients in a wide variety of matters, from trespassing to sex crimes to white collar crimes and investigations.
Our Latest Articles.
Vehicular Manslaughter in California
California is one of several states that has a separate crime for vehicular manslaughter. As the name implies, this crime occurs when you kill someone while you were driving a vehicle.
This crime can be an intentional act or even an unintentional act while you were intoxicated. This can be charged as a felony or a misdemeanor and is in addition to any civil liability, such as a suit by the victim’s probate estate. These claims can be brought by estates outside of California, such as the recent win by a probate attorney in Houston, Texas obtained against a California defendant that has been in the national news.
If you or a loved one has been involved in a vehicular manslaughter case, here is what you need to know.
Manslaughter is included in a set of crimes known as criminal homicide. It includes voluntary, involuntary, and vehicular manslaughter.
Section 192 of the Penal Code says that a person commits vehicular manslaughter if he kills another person while operating a vehicle as part of a criminal act or criminal negligence:
- driving a vehicle in the commission of an unlawful act, not amounting to a felony, and with gross negligence; or driving a vehicle in the commission of a lawful act which might produce death, in an unlawful manner, and with gross negligence.
- Driving a vehicle in the commission of an unlawful act, not amounting to a felony, but without gross negligence; or driving a vehicle in the commission of a lawful act which might produce death, in an unlawful manner, but without gross negligence.
- Driving a vehicle in connection with a violation of paragraph (3) of subdivision (a) of Section 550, where the vehicular collision or vehicular accident was knowingly caused for financial gain and proximately resulted in the death of any person. This paragraph does not prevent the prosecution of a defendant for the crime of murder.
This section is separate from Section 187. Section 187 applies if you killed someone while driving a car and committed an act that was a felony. This is often referred to as the California felony murder rule.
Penalties for Vehicular Manslaughter
You can be charged with a misdemeanor or a felony for vehicular manslaughter. Thus, the punishment can vary widely.
The max punishment for a misdemeanor charge with gross negligence is one year in county jail. The max felony charge is six years in state prison.
Ordinary negligence is a misdemeanor with one year in county jail.