The New York Penal Code takes a firm stance in cases involving police officers who are injured or killed in the line of duty. Aggravated manslaughter in the second degree is one of the crimes that can be charged when a police officer is killed under a specific set of circumstances.
Elements of Aggravated Manslaughter in the Second Degree
Aggravated manslaughter in the second degree is not a crime that requires a showing of intent. In other words, a person can be charged with aggravated manslaughter in the second degree without a demonstration that he or she intended the death of the victim.
A person can be charged with aggravated manslaughter in the second degree based on reckless conduct. Specifically, a person can be charged with this crime if he or she engaged in engaging in conduct that reasonably could be considered reckless, conduct with the potential of causing the death of someone else.
The law also requires that a person charged with aggravated manslaughter in the second degree must have been aware that the victim was some type of law enforcement or peace officer. In the alternative, even if the person causing the death lacked actual knowledge that the victim was a police officer, he or she reasonably should have known that was the status of the victim.
Examples of Aggravated Manslaughter in the Second Degree
An example of aggravated manslaughter in the second degree involves a situation in which a person was pulled over by a police officer while driving. The driver had been drinking and wanted to avoid getting a DUI charge. Therefore, immediately after pulling over, he speeds away.
While pursuing the driver, the police officer ends up involved in a one-car accident that takes the officer’s life. The driver of the vehicle fleeing from the police could face a aggravated manslaughter in the second degree charge.
Another example involves a woman who takes the police on a high-speed chase, without stopping. One of the patrol cars involved in the pursuit ends up overturning, killing the police officer. In this situation, a person could be charged with aggravated manslaughter in the second degree.
Sentence for Aggravated Manslaughter in the Second Degree
aggravated manslaughter in the second degree is classified as a class C felony. A person convicted of this crime can face a term of incarceration of up to 15 years in prison. A judge could also impose a hefty fine. There is no mandatory minimum sentence for this crime in the state of New York.
Defenses for Aggravated Manslaughter in the Second Degree
A defense to a charge of aggravated manslaughter in the second degree is demonstrating that the perpetrator’s conduct was not reckless. Laying out a defense based on a contention that certain conduct was not reckless is best accomplished through an experienced NYC criminal lawyer.
Another possible defense in a case involving aggravated manslaughter in the second degree is based on the statute of limitations. The statute of limitations sets a specific time period during which a aggravated manslaughter in the second degree case must be filed by a prosecutor. If the deadline is missed, a defense can made that the case must be dismissed for violating the statute of limitations.
A criminal defense lawyer will schedule what is known as an initial consultation. During an initial consultation, legal counsel will provide a case evaluation. In addition, a criminal defense attorney will provide answers to any questions a person facing criminal prosecution might have regarding a charge for aggravated manslaughter in the second degree. There is no charge for an initial consultation in a aggravated manslaughter in the second degree case.
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