Philadelphia Homicide, Manslaughter & Murder Attorney
Have you been arrested for murder or manslaughter in PA or NJ? If so, you are facing potentially years or a lifetime in prison, and possibly even the death penalty. When facing potentially life-altering criminal charges for a NJ or Philly homicide, your best option is to reach out to an experienced murder or manslaughter lawyer immediately at your first opportunity. Time is of the essence. Ready to discuss your case? We know how much is at stake. Call us to learn about your options and how we can help you.
Philadelphia Homicide Lawyer Defends Those Accused of Murder & Manslaughter Criminal Charges
Choosing a murder defense attorney is one of the most important decisions you will make. The lawyer you choose to defend you will advocate for you, negotiate for you, and build and strengthen your defense. You want an attorney who understands how the state (prosecution) will build their case against you so that they can have the best possible defense strategy.
Alan J. Tauber brings more than 30 years of experience providing professional legal assistance to his clients. When hired for a murder or manslaughter case, he pursues every possible path to get charges reduced to a lesser charge, or dismissed altogether. Tauber Law handles criminal defense cases in Pennsylvania (Philadelphia, Delaware, Montgomery, Bucks, and Chester counties) and in New Jersey (Camden, Burlington, Atlantic, and Mercer counties).
What Is Criminal Homicide in Pennsylvania & New Jersey?
Crimes of homicide involve killing another person or people, either intentionally or via acts of negligence, such as reckless or drunk driving. Whether a homicide is classified as murder, manslaughter, or lesser homicide depends on the circumstances of the event and the state of mind of the defendant.
Types of Homicide, Manslaughter, & Murder Charges We Defend in Pennsylvania
Drug Delivery Resulting in Death
Criminal Homicide of a Law Enforcement Officer
- Homicide by vehicle while driving under the influence: If you operate a vehicle while intoxicated, and cause an accident resulting in death to passengers or other motorists or pedestrians, you may be charged with this second-degree felony. If more than one person died, an additional separate count may be brought for each death.
- Homicide by Vehicle: If no impairment is involved and you unintentionally kill another person by breaking a traffic law while engaging in reckless or grossly negligent driving, you may be charged with this form of manslaughter. Examples include deaths resulting from accidents where a driver was excessively speeding, running red lights or stop signs, or breaking other traffic laws.
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Punishments & Sentences for Manslaughter Convictions in Pennsylvania
Punishments for murder and manslaughter crimes vary in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. However, courts take these crimes seriously. The following are possible punishments for a murder and manslaughter offense:
Death or a term of life imprisonment and a fine of up to $50,000. Note that “aggravated circumstances” can subject you to capital punishment.
A term of life imprisonment and a fine of up to $50,000.
A term which shall be fixed by the court at not more than 40 years.
Up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $25,000.
Up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $25,000.
Up to 7 years in prison and a fine of up to $15,000.
up to 5 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
A criminal homicide sentence in PA is determined in a sentencing hearing which is held separately from your trial (or guilty plea).
Defenses to Philadelphia Murder & Manslaughter Charges
Several defenses are available to murder and manslaughter charges. Below are some of the defenses that a murder or manslaughter defense attorney in NJ or PA can help you establish:
Accidental killing without intent: You had no intention to commit the murder, and you were engaged in lawful activity.
Actual innocence: The state does not have evidence to prove all the elements of the crime.
Battered woman’s syndrome: Women who are victims of intimate partner violence may be held hostage in a home, and believe if they leave, their partner will track them down and kill them.
Involuntary intoxication: If you were intoxicated against your will or unknowingly.
Insanity: This is an excuse defense, and not a justification defense - and only applies in limited circumstances. In Pennsylvania, a person may be found guilty but mentally ill.
Mistaken identity: A witness or law enforcement identified you as the perpetrator of the crime, but they were wrong. The state has the burden of proof to demonstrate that their identification is accurate.
Self-defense (Justifiable homicide): If you reasonably believed your life, or someone else's life was in danger, your use of deadly force as a means of protection may be justifiable.
Violation of Constitutional Rights: It is not common in a murder or manslaughter case, but if a confession is illegally obtained, or if you are not read your Miranda rights, this may be grounds for suppression of resulting statements or evidence.
Anyone facing criminal charges is well-advised to speak with a homicide defense lawyer as soon as possible about their unique situation and potential defenses available.
If You Were Charged, Our Philadelphia Homicide Lawyer Can Help
Why Choose a Pennsylvania & New Jersey Homicide Attorney from Tauber Law?
Alan J. Tauber has more than three decades of experience in state and federal criminal courts, including as Chief of the Defender Association of Philadelphia. Very few attorneys have the courtroom experience that Tauber Law offers his clients. When your future is hanging in the balance, do not trust your case to an inexperienced lawyer. He knows the courts, he knows the judges, and he knows the prosecutors. He can identify the strengths and weaknesses of a criminal case and put you in the best position to get your charges dropped or reduced - or fight them in court.
Settlement for malicious prosecution
Settlement for malicious prosecution and false arrest
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How much does a murder lawyer cost in PA and NJ?
When your future is at stake, you can’t afford to not have a lawyer. Costs for legal representation for the crime of murder vary widely depending on the nature of the charges, the experience of your attorney, and your geographic area. Various fee structures are available, including hourly and flat fees.
What are homicide sentencing factors for first-degree murder?
Persons convicted of first-degree murder will receive either mandatory life in prison or death. If certain aggravating circumstances apply (42 Pa.C.S. § 9711), the court may consider a sentence of death. These include killing a law enforcement officer or fireman on duty, killing a minor under the age of 12, and killing someone in the third trimester of their pregnancy.
What’s the difference between murder and manslaughter?
Every state has its own definition of different criminal acts. Generally, murder involves the element of “malice.” Manslaughter is the killing of another person (either voluntarily or involuntarily), without “malice aforethought,” also sometimes called “premeditation”.
How can you negotiate a plea bargain for homicide charges in Philly?
A plea bargain is essentially a “deal” where the D.A.’s office agrees to reduce or drop charges in exchange for a guilty plea. An experienced criminal defense lawyer can help you make this decision, and advocate for the best possible outcome.