Murder is a form of homicide where there was an intent to kill or other specific circumstances as defined by New York law. Murder charges are extremely serious, and murder convictions can carry devastating, lifelong consequences including potential life imprisonment and lifetime post release (parole) supervision. Being convicted of murder charges can result in your life being put on hold for decades. If you are facing charges for murder or manslaughter, working with an experienced criminal defense attorney can increase the likelihood that your charges are reduced, dropped or successfully defended against.
Victor Knapp, Esq. is dedicated to providing his clients with first-class representation and service which includes the development of a personalized attorney-client relationship. This relationship allows us to work better together –in being forthcoming and clear with each other and throughout the criminal trial process. With more than 33 years of criminal defense experience you can rely on him for a determined and strategic defense. While former case results do not predict future outcomes, Mr. Knapp has successfully defended numerous individuals accused of murder.
Types of Murder Charges in New York
The degree of murder charge filed in a particular case depends on various facts and circumstances specific to your case. While each case is different and requires an intensive factual review, certain factors are determinative of the degree of the charge including:
- If there was an intent to kill or some less culpable mental state involved
- If signs of planning or lying in wait for the victim are apparent
- If the defendant or another was provoked, attacked, or acted in self-defense
- If the cause of death is clear
- If there was a weapon or dangerous instrument involved
Murder (Homicide) Charges are always felonies and carry extremely serious penalties. If you are facing murder charges, it is essential that you seek experienced legal advice. There are three types of murder charges in New York. These include:
- Second Degree Murder — which carries a minimum sentence of 15 years in prison to life and a maximum sentence of 25 years in prison to life.
- First Degree Murder – In New York, a first degree murder conviction can carry a sentence of 20 years to 25 years in prison. Alternatively a sentence of life without parole can be imposed.
- Aggravated Murder – Aggravated murder mainly focuses on prohibiting the targeting killing of certain people like police or firefighters. A conviction for aggravated murder can be punished with life without parole.
When the prosecutor cannot show intent or one of the elements required for murder charges, he or she may decide to bring charges for manslaughter. While also a type of homicide, manslaughter is a lesser version of the offense because it lacks intent or other elements showing a depraved nature. Many killings by car, truck or SUV are charged as vehicular manslaughter. Those who unintentionally kill a person with a vehicle or kill a person while drunk or under the influence of drugs can be charged with second degree vehicular manslaughter. First degree vehicular manslaughter can be charged when the violation of a traffic law causes the death of another person. First degree manslaughter can also be charged if an individual driving with a suspended licenses kills another while drunk or under the influence of drugs. Regardless of whether you are facing murder or manslaughter charges, an experienced criminal defense attorney can protect you.
Defense Lawyer Victor Knapp Offers Initial Consultations and Second Opinions
If you or a loved one has been charged with murder in the Queens or lower New York State area, you owe it to yourself to secure aggressive and experienced defense representation. Don’t take chances with your future. Contact the Law Offices Victor Knapp to discuss your individual circumstances. You can reach us by calling 718-233-3823 or by contacting us online.