Voluntary manslaughter is a killing that takes place in the heat of passion after reasonable provocation. This means that there was an intentional killing that would have been murder but for provocation, which eases the gravity of the wrongdoing.
One key thing is that the provocation has to be reasonable. Mere insults are not enough to constitute reasonable provocation, but informational words could possibly be sufficient in some limited circumstances. Informational words are words that convey a message. If the defendant killed the victim by using excessive force in self-defense, he would be guilty of manslaughter (instead of murder) because the provocation that gave him the right to defend himself would be sufficient mitigation.
Another important point is that in order to constitute manslaughter, the killing has to be done in the heat of passion before the defendant could cool off. This is because the basic distinguishing characteristic between murder and manslaughter is that manslaughter is triggered by our natural human frailties and emotions like rage, passion, anger and terror. The law duly recognizes that these emotions can be extremely powerful and cause people to lose control. That loss of control negates malice, and therefore decreases the level of culpability.
Manslaughter charges are some of the most serious criminal charges that one can face. Often times when a defendant is charged with voluntary manslaughter they are held in custody or are released on high bail. Facing these charges can be overwhelming not only for the defendant but for all family members that have been affected by the charge. Voluntary manslaughter case are unique in that proving an event occurred in the heat of passion and not after a cooling off period is often complex. Our Criminal defense team have experience in representing defendants facing these charges and is available to help you or your family member that is facing this charge.
Voluntary Manslaughter Criminal Defense Lawyers at Altman & Altman, LLP
For over 40 years, the Greater Boston Law Firm of Altman & Altman, LLP has been providing outstanding criminal defense representation to clients throughout the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Our dedicated MA Voluntary Manslaughter Defense Attorneys have the experience, knowledge and courtroom expertise to provide legal advice of the highest quality. The Boston Voluntary Manslaughter Defense Lawyers at Altman & Altman have been featured as legal analysts on CourtTV, The BBC Network, The Fox News Channel and MSNBC.
At Altman & Altman, LLP, we understand that facing charges of Voluntary Manslaughter in Massachusetts is frequently a confusing and frightening experience for those involved. In order to reduce your stress and defend your rights, our MA Criminal Defense Lawyers will stand by your side throughout the entire criminal process.
If you or someone you love is facing Voluntary Manslaughter Charges in MA, please Contact the Greater Boston Law Firm of Altman & Altman, LLP to schedule a Free Initial Consultation with one of our skillful Criminal Defense Attorneys. With office conveniently located in Boston and Cambridge, our MA Voluntary Manslaughter Lawyers have the ability to meet with clients face-to-face to discuss their legal issues. Please Contact Us by Phone or Online – we are available around the clock, twenty four hours a day, seven days a week.