When You Should Hire a Skilled Homicide Attorney in Los Angeles

If you find yourself in the unfortunate situation of being accused of murder, you require a homicide attorney in Los Angeles to prepare your defense.

Homicide Attorney in Los Angeles CA


If you need a skilled homicide attorney, it is important to know the difference between a criminal defense attorney and an experienced homicide lawyer.

Criminal defense attorneys can help with many different types of criminal cases, but they may not have experience with homicides or other violent crimes. A skilled homicide lawyer has been practicing law for years and knows how to handle these types of cases better than anyone else.

Hiring an experienced homicide lawyer will give you peace of mind knowing that your case is being handled by someone who understands the complexities involved in defending people accused of murder charges. This type of legal representation could make all the difference in your case outcome!

Hire An Experienced Homicide Attorney in Los Angeles


Like other states, California law defines murder as a deliberate act that leads to the death of another human being. According to Penal Code 187, “Murder is the unlawful killing of another with malice aforethought.”

Criminal homicide charges can be the result of several elements. Generally, these elements include whether the act that caused the death was deliberate or unintended, whether it was premeditated, or was the result of careless or reckless behaviors on the part of another.

Although, in some circumstances, homicide is not considered a criminal act, such as in cases where the death penalty is enacted, or a police officer kills a criminal or a suspect while carrying out their official duties to protect the community.

Murder will more than likely lead to a felony charge in the state of California. Remember your Miranda Rights—to remain silent and to be represented by an attorney. If law enforcement officers accuse you of killing another person, you will require a homicide attorney to combat the charges.

An experienced criminal law lawyer will offer advice and begin building a strong legal defense strategy as soon as you are charged. A Los Angeles murder attorney from The Law Office of Christopher Chaney will protect your rights as they represent your case.

Additional Homicide Defense Attorney Practice Areas


A skilled and knowledgeable criminal lawyer will also be experienced with multiple criminal defense practice areas of California criminal law, such as:

  • Attempted murder
  • Child abuse and child endangerment
  • Child molestation and child pornography
  • Crimes assault/battery
  • Criminal threats
  • Domestic battery
  • DUI
  • Federal drug trafficking, drug possession, and other drug crimes
  • Identity theft, mail fraud, and other federal crimes
  • Indecent exposure, statutory rape, and other sex crimes
  • Internet crimes
  • Juvenile crimes
  • Money laundering
  • Resisting arrest
  • Theft crimes
  • Violating a restraining order
  • White-collar crimes

Often, when you are charged for a serious crime, you’ll face more than one charge. If you face homicide charges in Santa Monica, California, you should immediately hire a Los Angeles homicide attorney to prepare your criminal case and provide legal representation.

Degrees of Felony Los Angeles Homicide Cases


In California, there are varying degrees in the charge of homicide. California Penal Code section 187 defines “murder” as the unlawful and unjustified killing of a human being or an unborn child with malice aforethought. Several types of murder vary from involuntary manslaughter to capital murder charge.

In many cases, with the help of a skilled criminal defense attorney with considerable experience and resources, a capital murder case might be reduced to manslaughter or even dismissed due to his capable legal defenses. Based on the facts of the case, homicide is commonly charged as the following:

  • First-degree murder is defined as the unjustified, unlawful, and premeditated malicious killing of another human being.
  • Second-degree murder is designated as a homicide that was not deliberate and occurred without being deliberate.
  • Involuntary manslaughter (also known as third-degree murder) is a criminally negligent act that results in death.
  • Voluntary manslaughter (also known as third-degree murder) occurs when the unlawful killing happened without malice or premeditation, such as in the case of an accident or the passionate heat of the moment.
  • Vehicular manslaughter occurs when someone is unlawfully killed by another person driving a vehicle recklessly or under the influence of a controlled substance.

Defenses to a homicide charge range from self-defense and accidental death to insanity or illegal search and seizure. A Los Angeles domestic violence attorney may also be able to argue that the death was due to special circumstances, such as systemic abuse at the hands of the abuser.

The right defense attorneys may reduce your charges and obtain optimal case results like a dismissal.


Felony Murder Rule Explained

The felony murder rule is a legal principle that holds one person responsible for the death of another if they commit or attempt to commit any felony.

This means even if someone commits a non-violent crime, such as burglary, and unintentionally kills someone in the process, they can be charged with first degree murder. In some cases this could mean life imprisonment without parole.

If you are not sure about what crimes fall under California’s felony murder rule it is best to consult an attorney before committing or attempting any crime. You may want to avoid breaking into houses altogether.

Call an experienced Los Angeles murder defense attorney for more information on how the new felony murder law will affect your future criminal actions!

Defenses Against Murder Charges in Los Angeles


When preparing a Los Angeles murder defense, an attorney may use a tactic indicating that it was an unfortunate result of being the recipient of assault and battery, sexual assault crimes, or other violent crimes.

To win a conviction against a possible murderer, the prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant specifically had the deliberate and premeditated criminal intent to kill another person.

Some potential defenses in your homicide case include the following:

  • Accidental Killing: If you were not engaged in unlawful activity, had no unlawful intent, and were using ordinary caution, your case may be reduced to manslaughter or dismissed as an unfortunate accident.
  • Exercise of Duty: California seeks to protect law enforcement officers and other individuals acting under the command of the police when the death resulted from the officer exercising their legal duty without using excessive force.
  • Insanity: If the person accused of the crime lacked the rational state of mind necessary for premeditated malice at the time of the crime.
  • Mistaken Identity: Perhaps law enforcement officers misidentified you as the killer, and you have an iron-clad alibi that makes it impossible to have committed the crime. Your charges may be dismissed due to mistaken identity.
  • Self Defense or the Defense of Others: According to California Criminal Code section 3470, under their “Stand Your Ground” law, you are entitled to defend yourself or someone else. You are also allowed to pursue the attacker until the risk of death or extreme bodily injury passes if deemed reasonably necessary.

You should promptly retain the services of a criminal defense attorney so he can immediately examine the charges that you face and safeguard any evidence from the crime scene to begin building your defense strategy.

Legal representatives from the Law Firm of Christopher Chaney have the necessary experience to safeguard your freedom when facing a murder case in California.

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