In the state of California, an individual who takes another person's life in defending him or herself or someone else may be charged with justifiable homicide, also referred to as excusable homicide in a situation where someone is killed accidentally without the presence of negligent or illegal activity. Essentially, the two types of homicide in California which are considered non-criminal are justifiable and excusable homicide.
At The Justice Firm, our Los Angeles justifiable homicide attorneys are dedicated to protecting the legal rights and freedom of individuals who have been accused of homicide, but who took another person's life unintentionally, or while acting in self-defense. When someone accidentally takes the life of another person while not engaged in any other criminal activity, or in protecting his or her own life or someone else's, the outcome should be a not guilty verdict. We work diligently to have homicide charges dismissed on behalf of those who are innocent.Justifiable and Excusable Homicide in California
Accidental and excusable homicide are defined under California Penal Code Section 195 as:
- A homicide committed by accident and misfortune or during lawful conduct and without any intent to kill.
- A homicide committed by accident and misfortune, in the heat of passion, upon any sudden combat, when no undue advantage is taken, nor any dangerous weapon used, and when the killing is not done in a cruel or unusual manner.
Justifiable homicide differs in that a killing may be intentional in the fact that you may intentionally kill someone in the act of defending yourself or someone else when you feel your life is in danger. For practical purposes, the terms justifiable and excusable are often used interchangeably today.
In order for a jury to find you not guilty, it must be proven that you or someone else were in imminent danger of losing your life; in other words, you had reasonable belief that you or another individual were in danger of being killed immediately. If you did act in self-defense, it is also necessary that the facts show you used only as much force as any reasonable individual would have deemed necessary for self protection.Los Angeles Criminal Defense Lawyers Defending Against Homicide and Murder Charges
Being charged with murder, whether first- or second-degree, is one of the most frightening prospects you may face. However, as capable criminal defense attorneys, we know that in many cases a client's actions are justified depending on the circumstances in a particular situation. While you may have actually committed what is legally considered justifiable homicide, prosecutors will work aggressively in their efforts to have you convicted of murder, which will result in severe criminal penalties and possibly life in prison.
It is critical that when charged with such a serious or violent criminal offense your rights and freedom are protected. Our Los Angeles justifiable homicide attorneys will fight hard to prove to the jury and judge that you did not intentionally take someone else's life in an unlawful manner, but that your actions were justified.Contact The Justice Firm Immediately
There is no criminal offense in the state of California punished more harshly than murder. Unfortunately, many innocent people sit behind prison bars today for crimes they did not intentionally commit. Without a capable and qualified criminal defense attorney on your side, a jury may determine that your actions were intentional or unlawful, when in fact they were not.
We urge you to contact our firm immediately at 310-914-2444 for outstanding legal guidance and representation. Protecting your legal rights, freedom, and reputation is our top priority.