If a person is convicted of murder in Louisiana, they could be facing life in prison or even the death penalty. However, it is possible to be charged with murder without ever intending to kill another person. If someone is killed while someone is carrying out a felony, the person who committed the crime could face a second-degree murder charge, regardless of their intent to inflict bodily harm.
If you suspect that you may be under investigation for murder in Louisiana, it is critical to contact an experienced murder defense attorney as soon as possible. Your attorney will fight to protect your rights and work with you to craft the best defense strategy for your unique situation.
Second Degree Murder Defined
In Louisiana, murder charges are broken into two categories based on severity: first and second-degree murder. First-degree murder is killing someone with intent while committing a serious felony. Additionally, a person could be charged with first-degree murder for killing specific individuals such as firemen, police officers, or other public servants. Those who kill multiple people may also face first-degree murder charges.
Murder in the second degree is defined as the killing of a person with the intent to kill. However, if someone is killed while a person is carrying out or attempting to carry out specific felonies, the offender could also be charged with second-degree murder. Even if the offender had no intent to kill, they could face second-degree murder charges if someone was killed while they were committing one of the following felonies:
- Aggravated arson
- Aggravated burglary
- Aggravated or second-degree kidnapping
- Assault by drive-by shooting
- Cruelty to juveniles
Additionally, a person may be charged with second-degree murder if they gave someone a toxic or controlled substance that ended in fatality for the consumer. Since second-degree murder encompasses unintentional homicide, it is possible to be charged with murder without directly killing a person.
Penalties for Second Degree Murder in Louisiana
While those convicted of first-degree murder may be sentenced to the death penalty, it is not a sentence for those convicted of second-degree murder. Individuals convicted of second-degree murder in Lousiana are sentenced to life imprisonment with hard labor and no possibility of parole or a shorter sentence.
Even if you are not convicted, being charged with murder can be a devastating blow to your life. Many people charged with murder have difficulty in their relationships, finding employment, and suffer irreparable damage to their reputations.
Contact a Trusted Lousiana Murder Defense Attorney
If you have been charged with murder, it is essential to contact an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. Eric G. Johnson of The John D. & Eric G Johnson Law Firm is a passionate problem solver. He has a proven track record of successfully trying criminal cases across Louisiana. Attorney Johnson is committed to providing his clients with top-notch legal services and expertly protecting their rights. Schedule a free consultation today by calling (318) 377-1555 or filling out our contact form.