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Understanding involuntary manslaughter laws

When a person dies due to the actions of another, it could be considered murder, voluntary manslaughter or involuntary manslaughter. These different terms can be confusing, but they all lead to different sentencing procedures because they are all different crimes.

Involuntary manslaughter is a crime where a person's actions led to another person's death. These actions typically must be dangerous and irresponsible in some way in order for an involuntary manslaughter charge to result. For a person to be charged with involuntary manslaughter means that he or she did not intend to cause a person's death, but his or her irresponsible and negligent actions mean that punishment is still justified.

How is involuntary manslaughter charged?

In order for a person to be charged with manslaughter, certain elements must be proven true. First of all, a person must have died as a direct result of the actions of the defendant. In other words, if the defendant had not have acted in the way he or she did, the person would not have died. Secondly, these actions that were exhibited were dangerous, reckless or done without care for the safety of others. Finally, the defendant also must have known that what he or she was doing was dangerous.

Based on these elements, a possible defense to involuntary manslaughter is ignorance. This is because the defendant did not know that his or her actions could have caused harm, he or she cannot be charged with the crime of involuntary manslaughter.

If you have been accused of involuntary manslaughter in Georgia, it is vital that you take immediate action in order to build your defense.

Source: FindLaw, "Involuntary Manslaughter Overview," accessed June 08, 2018

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