Orange County Criminal Lawyers
Vehicular Manslaughter in Brea
While in the city of Brea, if you cause another person's death as a result of your driving, you can be charged and convicted of Vehicular Manslaughter pursuant to California Penal Code 192(c). The death involved can be of a driver or passenger in the vehicle that you collided with or it can also be a death of a passenger in the vehicle you were driving.
According to PC 192(c), the death must also be the result of negligence that was in the process of a misdemeanor or infraction. If the death occurs in the process of a felony offense, then murder charges will instead be filed and not vehicular manslaughter charges.Necessary Elements for a Vehicular Manslaughter Conviction
If you are charged with vehicular manslaughter, the prosecution must prove the following necessary elements:
- That an infraction, misdemeanor or lawful act performed in an unlawful manner, was committed while driving and
- That the infraction, misdemeanor or lawful act performed in an unlawful manner, caused danger to human life in the circumstances of the commission and
- That the infraction, misdemeanor or lawful act performed in an unlawful manner, caused the death of another person
Vehicular manslaughter is a wobbler offense meaning that the charges the prosecution can bring against you can either be felony charges or misdemeanor charges.
The difference between a misdemeanor charge of vehicular manslaughter and a felony charge of vehicular manslaughter is whether or not gross negligence was involved. If you acted with gross negligence, then you would be charged with either a misdemeanor or a felony. If you did not, then it would be considered a misdemeanor with less severe penalties. In both circumstances, your driver’s license will be revoked. While some may think that revocation of one’s driver’s license is the same as suspension of one’s driver’s license that is not the case. If someone were to get their license revoked, then that means that they cannot get their license back unless they go through the full process of taking the driving test again and completing that successfully. On the other hand, if you were to get your license suspended, then after paying the necessary fines and waiting the required amount of time, your license can still be reinstated. However, it should be noted that if you are found to be driving on a suspended or revoked license, there are harsh consequences such as fines and maybe even a jail sentence.
Depending on the charge, the penalty or punishment can result in; 2-years, 4-years or 6-years in state prison for a felony charge and 1-year in County jail for a misdemeanor charge. Furthermore, your driver's license can be suspended or revoked by the California Department of Motor Vehicles.
If you are charged with vehicular manslaughter, it is imperative that you find an experienced attorney to fight the charges brought against you. Calling one of our defense lawyers as soon as possible could increase the chances of a better outcome for you.