A type of involuntary manslaughter, vehicular manslaughter occurs when a negligent or reckless driver is responsible for an accident that results in the death of another person. A tragic and life-altering experience, a vehicular manslaughter charge typically involves a traffic accident in which the driver was driving under the influence (DUI), disobeyed some traffic law and ended up in an accident. Unfortunately, even though the crime of vehicular manslaughter does not typically include intent to injure or kill another, the charge may still be penalized with a prison sentence of up to ten years.
Vehicular Manslaughter Penal Code 192c
According to PC 192 (c), you can only be guilty of vehicular manslaughter if death was the result of an unlawful act or a lawful act which might result in death when committed in an unlawful manner. Consequently, one of the tasks of a judge and/or jury is to determine if the cause of vehicular manslaughter was done with or without gross negligence, a distinction of the crime being tried as a misdemeanor or a felony – as an act of gross negligence or simple negligence.
Examples of California Vehicular Manslaughter
Charges you could face in California if you are the driver of a vehicle and are responsible for an accident in which a death occurs include vehicular manslaughter, misdemeanor manslaughter, DUI manslaughter, felony vehicular manslaughter, and gross vehicular manslaughter. Some examples of vehicular manslaughter are outlined below.
- Failure to stop at a traffic signal when road conditions are normal, that causes an accident that results in the death of another driver or a passenger (gross negligence)
- Driving in excess of the speed limit and striking a person with your car who is standing by a roadway or near a parked car (gross negligence)
- Death of a pedestrian struck in a crosswalk when the driver is impaired by the bright headlights of another vehicle (simple negligence)
- Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, violating a traffic law and causing an accident that results in the death of another (felony vehicular manslaughter)
Consult with an Experienced Los Angeles Criminal Defense Lawyer when Faced with a Vehicular Manslaughter Charge in Los Angeles County
Vehicular defense lawyers have many resources for disproving or putting doubt into the minds of a jury or judge. Using accident reconstruction experts, independent forensic toxicology analysts, and engineers, a clever defense attorney has the resources to try to mitigate the chances of a conviction or have a vehicular manslaughter charge dismissed.
If you or a loved one has been charged with vehicular manslaughter, R.J. Manuelian invites you to contact him for a consultation. He will use all the resources at his disposal to craft an appropriate defense strategy for your case, stand up for your rights, and aggressively challenge the prosecutor’s case. Contact R.J. for a free evaluation of your vehicular manslaughter case.