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Los Angeles Vehicular Manslaughter Lawyer

Los Angeles Vehicular Manslaughter Law

Being charged with vehicular manslaughter in Los Angeles can be an incredibly stressful and frightening experience. These charges often stem from tragic accidents where a driver made a mistake or error in judgement that resulted in the loss of life. While the circumstances are always unfortunate, it does not necessarily mean the driver is a criminal who deserves severe punishment.

This article will provide an overview of vehicular manslaughter laws in Los Angeles, typical penalties, and potential defenses. My goal is to educate drivers on their rights and options if charged, and the importance of hiring an experienced Los Angeles vehicular manslaughter defense attorney.

What is Vehicular Manslaughter?

Vehicular manslaughter refers to causing the death of another person through the negligent or unlawful operation of a vehicle. There are a few types of vehicular manslaughter charges in Los Angeles:

  • Gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated – Causing death while driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs and acting with gross negligence.
  • Gross vehicular manslaughter – Causing death by driving with gross negligence, but not under the influence.
  • Misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter – Causing death by driving with ordinary negligence.

Gross negligence generally means driving in a reckless way with a high risk of causing death, like speeding on a busy sidewalk. Ordinary negligence is less reckless, like accidentally running a red light. DUI vehicular manslaughter has additional penalties.

Penalties for Vehicular Manslaughter

Potential penalties for vehicular manslaughter convictions include:

  • Misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter – Up to 1 year in county jail
  • Gross vehicular manslaughter – 2, 4, or 6 years in state prison
  • DUI vehicular manslaughter – 4, 6, or 10 years in state prison

All types will also include 3+ years of license suspension, fines up to $10,000, and restitution to victims. Immigration consequences may also apply for non-citizens.

Common Defenses Against Vehicular Manslaughter

There are several legal defenses that an experienced attorney may use to fight vehicular manslaughter charges, such as:

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Guerline Menard
Guerline Menard
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  • No negligence – Argue your driving did not meet the definition of negligence.
  • No causation – Argue that your driving was not the direct cause of death.
  • Lack of evidence – Challenge the strength of the prosecution’s evidence.
  • Necessity – Argue you violated a traffic law to prevent a greater harm.

An attorney can also negotiate with the prosecution for reduced charges or sentencing leniency. But this takes an experienced negotiator.

Why Hire an Attorney?

Trying to navigate vehicular manslaughter charges in Los Angeles without legal representation is extremely unwise. An attorney can provide these invaluable services:

  • Conduct an independent investigation of the accident
  • Obtain and review all evidence collected by police
  • Hire expert witnesses to challenge the prosecution’s version of events
  • Negotiate with the prosecution for reduced charges or sentencing leniency
  • File motions to suppress illegally obtained evidence
  • Present persuasive defenses at trial highlighting reasonable doubt

In short, an attorney levels the playing field and ensures your rights and defenses are fully asserted. This gives you the best chance at a favorable case outcome.

How to Find the Best Vehicular Manslaughter Lawyer in Los Angeles

If you or a loved one are facing vehicular manslaughter charges, it is critical to have an experienced Los Angeles defense attorney on your side. When researching attorneys, be sure to:

  • Look for 10+ years of experience specifically handling vehicular manslaughter and homicide cases
  • Find someone familiar with Los Angeles courts, judges, and prosecutors
  • Ask about case results and past client testimonials
  • Meet for a free consultation and case evaluation
  • Make sure you feel comfortable and can openly communicate

Don’t leave your future in the hands of just anyone – vehicular manslaughter is serious. Take time to make the right attorney choice.

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