Finding yourself accused of another person’s death can seem like a nightmare. But for some, this is waking reality. And it’s a terrifying reality, as you may be feeling scared and fearful that everything you’ve worked so hard to achieve – including your career, your family and your life as a whole – could be lost if you are convicted of this crime.
It’s also possible that you may also be left grappling with the serious emotional and psychological effects that can arise as a result of being present to witness another person’s death. The guilt alone can be overwhelming.
But there is help. If you’re accused of manslaughter, you need an experienced defense lawyer to represent your case. Manslaughter is a serious felony charge that can leave you with a criminal record, in addition to facing a lengthy prison sentence and/or hefty fines.
While compared to murder, manslaughter is considered a lesser criminal offense, you can still face very severe legal penalties if you are convicted of this crime. Specifically, in Texas, manslaughter can result in years in decades in prison, plus significant fines.
At the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass, we represent Texans who are facing charges such as manslaughter, murder, and other serious crimes. Our manslaughter defense attorneys, who represent clients throughout Dallas County, Collin County, and Denton County, have been successful in securing acquittals, dismissals and charge reductions in many serious criminal cases.
If you or a loved one have been accused of manslaughter, you need to trust your case to a strategic yet aggressive defense lawyer who will work hard to defend your constitutional rights. Contact the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass to discuss your case in a fully confidential, no-cost consultation session by calling (972) 422-9999.
Common Concerns When Facing a Manslaughter Charge in Collin County
Manslaughter is a serious charge that can be prosecuted if you are believed to be responsible for another person’s death. Manslaughter charges may be filed when the death results from your alleged reckless actions.
Since this charge can result in serious prison time (amongst other penalties), it’s normal that you may be feeling stressed and frightened. The legal team at the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass has compiled information on some of the most frequently asked questions on the topic of manslaughter in Texas.
What is the Definition of Manslaughter in Texas?
While many states divide manslaughter into voluntary and involuntary categories, there is no such distinction in Texas. There is manslaughter, plus a couple of additional types of manslaughter: intoxication manslaughter and vehicular manslaughter.
For a manslaughter conviction, a jury must find that you recklessly caused another person’s death. There is no element of intent for manslaughter, which is the primary distinction between manslaughter and murder.
Intoxication manslaughter refers to a death that arises from recklessness that occurs while the defendant is under the influence of drugs, alcohol or even pharmaceutical drugs. Notably, Texas is currently the only state in the U.S. that prosecutes intoxication manslaughter.
Vehicular manslaughter refers to an act of reckless driving that results in another person’s death. This vehicle can include a car, a truck, a motorcycle, or a vessel, such as a boat.
All forms of manslaughter are considered second-degree felonies, which carry a potential prison sentence of 2 to 20 years, plus a fine of up to $10,000.
How Is Manslaughter Different from Murder in Collin County?
In Texas, manslaughter is unintentional, whereas murder has an element of intention and premeditation.
Murder charges can be filed in cases where a person:
intentionally and knowingly causes a death;
committed a felony (or attempted to commit a felony) and in doing so, committed an act that was an apparent threat to human life, with that act ultimately resulting in another person’s death; or
intentionally causes serious bodily injury to another person by committing an act that was apparently dangerous and threatening to one’s life. When this act results in a death, it is considered murder.
As you can see, by this definition, murder charges involve an intention or an element of calculation or planning. There may also be elements of malice aforethought and premeditation.
In the case of manslaughter, the only requirement is reckless behavior or actions on the part of the defendant.
Hire Our Texas Lawyers to Defend You from Manslaughter Charges
A conviction for manslaughter can be life changing due to the seriousness of this crime. What’s more, manslaughter does carry a tremendous social stigma that, when combined with your criminal record, can make it challenging to get a job, get an education or even maintain your role as a productive member of the community.
Getting your life back on track starts with a detailed review of police reports and evidence. In preparing for trial, we identify any inconsistencies or weaknesses in the prosecution’s case against you. We have more than 20 years of experience in handling all kinds of criminal cases, including some very complex cases. Our goal is to protect your rights and secure the most favorable outcome possible, such as reduction of charges, an acquittal or a dismissal.
Founded by a Texas lawyer who has been defending clients since 1993, the defense attorneys with the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass work to defend clients who are accused of state or federal crimes. The firm founder, Attorney Jeffrey Grass has served as a U.S. Navy Judge Advocate (JAG), and he was also named one of the Top 100 Lawyers by the National Trial Lawyers Association. He also maintains an AV® Preeminent Peer Review Rating from Martindale-Hubbell®.
If you’re under investigation or have been arrested for manslaughter, do not delay in contacting the Law Offices of Jeffrey C. Grass. Our defense lawyers are here to discuss your case in a free, fully confidential consultation. Call (972) 422-9999.
From my first meeting with Jeffery Grass I knew he was the Attorney to handle my case. He was obviously very knowledgeable and experienced and made me feel at ease and confident about a positive outcome. Even though my case became very involved he stayed with it and took care of every detail. I could not be happier with the results and highly recommend Jeffery Grass if you want the very best Attorney. A very Happy Client.