There are no crimes more serious, and no consequences more severe, than those involving the taking of a human life. A homicide means a person’s life has come to an end wrongfully or violently. But, a homicide can also quite literally end the life of the person convicted of such a crime, even if the death penalty is not the outcome. Just being charged with homicide can end your life as you know it, as family and friends, colleagues and your community, distance themselves from you or convict you in their own minds.
Befitting the severity of murder and manslaughter, the prosecutors assigned to obtain convictions in such cases are the best in the State of Texas. They will pull out every stop, spare no expense, and work tirelessly to put someone they believe to be a killer behind bars for as long as the law allows.
If you are facing any type of San Marcos homicide charge, there is no more important choice you can make than your choice of a defense attorney. It is no exaggeration to say that you are placing your life in your lawyer’s hands when the full force of the Texas justice system is aligned against you. The lawyer you hire to defend your life and your future must be up to the task. He or she must be prepared to protect your rights and seek your acquittal with the same determination and effort that prosecutors will bring to your case.
Aggressive Defense Against All Texas Homicide Charges
At the Law Office of Case J. Darwin, we understand how to fight and beat Texas homicide charges. We also understand how frightening it can be when the possibility of a lifetime in prison or the prospect of the death penalty is looming over you. That is why we are so relentless in our advocacy when defending against homicide charges.
In Texas, homicide is defined as “intentionally, knowingly, recklessly, or with criminal negligence” causing the death of another person. Homicides are broadly classified as either murder or manslaughter, with multiple degrees and subcategories of offenses depending on the accused’s intent and the circumstances involved the killing.
We provide experienced and aggressive advocacy and defense representation in all homicide cases, including:
- Capital Murder. The offense of capital murder is typically a murder with (1) the specific intent to kill, and (2) a murder committed in the course of kidnapping, burglary, robbery, aggravated sexual assault, arson, obstruction or retaliation, or terroristic threat. See Pen. Code Ann. § 19.03 (West 2018). A person convicted of capital murder faces either the death penalty or life imprisonment without the possibility of parole. See Tex. Pen. Code Ann. § 12.31 (West 2018)
- The offense of murder has 3 different manner and means: (1) intentionally or knowingly causing the death of a person, (2) intent to cause serious bodily injury and the commission of an act clearly dangerous to human life, which causes the death of person, or (3) felony murder, which is a death of a person in the course of a felony or immediate flight therefrom and an act clearly dangerous to human life. See Tex. Pen. Code Ann. § 19.02 (West 2018). The jury does not have to be unanimous on the specific manner and means above, only unanimous as a whole that a murder was committed somewhere within those 3 categories. A murder is typically a first-degree felony. However, at the punishment stage of trial, if a defendant can prove, by a preponderance of the evidence, that he caused the death by “adequate cause” or “sudden passion,” such murder is a second-degree felony. A first-degree felony carries a punishment range of 5 to 99 years, while a second-degree felony carries a punishment range of 2 to 20 years. The offense of murder is also a 3(g) or aggravated offense. See Tex. Code Crim. Proc. Ann. art. 42A.054 (West 2018)
- Attempted Murder. There is no codified “attempted murder” statute. Texas Penal Code Section 15.01 provides that, an attempt to commit a criminal offense, charges a defendant with such offense, but just one degree lower. See Pen. Code Ann. § 15.01 (West 2018). Thus, attempted murder is a second-degree felony, carrying a punishment range of 2 to 20 years. However, prosecutors generally charge “attempted murder” as Aggravated Assault or Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon because the State only then has to prove a reckless intent. See Tex. Pen. Code Ann. § 22.02 (West 2018). Aggravated Assault or Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon is a second-degree felony and carries a punishment range of 2 to 20 years. The offense of Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon is a 3(g) or aggravated offense. See Tex. Code Crim. Proc. Ann. art. 42A.054 (West 2018)
- The offense of manslaughter is when a person “recklessly” causes the death of a person. See Tex. Pen. Code Ann. § 19.04 (West 2018). The offense of manslaughter is a second-degree felony and carries a punishment range of 2 to 20 years
- Criminally Negligent Homicide. The offense of criminally negligent homicide is when a person causes the death of another person by “criminal negligence.” See Pen. Code Ann. § 19.05 (West 2018). Such offense is a state jail felony and carries a punishment range of 180 days to 2 years in prison
- Intoxication Manslaughter. The offense of intoxication manslaughter is causing the death of another person by accident or mistake, while D.W.I. See Pen. Code Ann. § 49.08 (West 2018). Such offense is a second-degree felony and carries a punishment range of 2 to 20 years.
Your Life Is on the Line. Make the Right Choice.
You need more than a criminal defense lawyer if you have been charged with committing a homicide in San Marcos. You need a fierce advocate who will defend you and challenge prosecutors and law enforcement at every turn. You need a dedicated ally who will stand by your side throughout your entire ordeal. You need a former prosecutor who has the experience and insights to mount the most robust possible defense and give you the best chance of a positive outcome.
That is what you get at the Law Office of Case J. Darwin. We know that your life is at stake and we act accordingly, using every tool we have and sparing no effort to protect you. To speak with an experienced Central Texas homicide defense attorney today, call (210) 960-8482 or contact us online to arrange for your free initial consultation.