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Denver Criminal Defense Lawyer / Denver Murder Lawyer

Denver Murder Lawyer

Murder is one of the most serious crimes that one can be accused of, and being arrested for it requires swift, decisive legal action. Before you discuss your case with anyone, including police and seemingly understanding prosecutors, you need to hire your own lawyer. Denver murder lawyer Reid DeChant is ready and available to do everything in his power to help you beat these charges.

Premeditated First Degree Murder

Premeditated first degree murder is the intentional killing of another person and, as the name suggests, is premeditated, meaning the offender contemplated the undertaking of an activity. Premeditation can occur for any period of time—years to just seconds. First degree murder is always punished by life in prison without the possibility of parole.

First Degree Murder During the Commission of a Crime

An individual can also be charged with first degree murder if they were committing a certain crime and anyone, including an accomplice, was killed in the act. This killing can be intentional or accidental. The crimes that qualify for this type of first degree murder include arson, burglary, robbery, kidnapping, sexual assault, or the distribution of controlled substances to a minor on school grounds. This type of murder is also punishable by a life sentence without parole.

Second Degree Murder

Second degree murder is knowingly causing the death of another, but there is no premeditation. A second degree murder offender might have acted impulsively and without premeditation, but with an understanding of their actions. Second degree murder is a Class 2 felony punishable by 16 to 48 years in prison, five years of parole, and a fine of up to $1,000,000.

Heat of Passion Murder

Heat of passion murder is still second degree murder, but it is a Class 3 felony, as opposed to a Class 2 felony. In order for a murder to be considered a heat of passion killing, the offense must be caused by a “serious and highly provoking act of the intended victim, affecting the defendant sufficiently to excite an irresistible passion in a reasonable person.” There cannot be any time for a “voice of reason” to be heard in between the highly provoking act and the killing in order for the murder to be considered a “heat of passion killing.” An example of a heat of passion killing is walking in on one’s spouse with a lover and instantly killing one of them. An example of a similar scenario that would be a second degree felony and not a heat of passion killing would be first yelling at or arguing with the spouse and other party, and then killing them. The sentence for a heat of passion killing is 10 to 32 years in prison and a maximum fine of $750,000, with a mandatory  five-years parole period.

Call a Denver Murder Lawyer Today

There are few things worse than being arrested for murder. But an arrest does not necessarily equal a conviction. To get started on your legal defense today, we strongly urge you to reach out to Reid DeChant at DeChant Law. Call us at 720-634-6789 for a free case evaluation.