What Is Negligent Homicide?
Any type of homicide in Ouachita Parish involves one person killing another, but there are many different types of homicidal crimes in the state. Negligent homicide refers to a crime that involves killing another person through criminal negligence. The term negligent refers to the fact that the defendant did not intend to kill another person. However, it was through their own negligence, or carelessness, that another person lost their life.
Negligent homicide is a felony offense in Louisiana, and those convicted will face some of the harshest penalties. If you have been charged with this crime, it is critical that you speak to a Ouachita Parish violent crime lawyer who can help you beat your charges.
Negligent Homicide Under Louisiana Law
State law defines negligent homicide as any death caused by another person operating an aircraft, a motor vehicle, or any means of conveyance when the person driving the vehicle was impaired by drugs or alcohol. Any death caused by the negligent actions of another person, or an animal attack, is considered negligent homicide. When a person is charged with negligent homicide after an animal attack, the prosecution must show that the individual failed to restrain or control the animal.
For example, if a motorist was under the influence of alcohol and was involved in an accident that killed another person, they could be charged with negligent homicide. If a driver was not under the influence of drugs or alcohol but they acted carelessly, such as texting while driving, and a person was killed, they could also be charged with negligent homicide.
Penalties for Those Convicted of Negligent Homicide
Any type of homicide is taken very seriously in Louisiana’s criminal courts, even when the act was only a mistake. Like other types of homicide, the penalties for those convicted are harsh. A conviction for negligent homicide can include the following penalties:
- A maximum of five years in state prison, which may or may not include hard labor
- Maximum $5,000 in fines
- A driver’s license suspension, if the death was caused by driving under the influence
If a person’s negligence caused the death of a child ten years old or younger, a conviction will include a prison sentence, along with hard labor. Individuals in this situation are also not eligible for parole or probation for a minimum of two years, and for up to five years.
Our Violent Crime Lawyer in Ouachita Parish Can Help You Beat Your Charges
Violent crimes carry some of the harshest penalties for those convicted, including negligent homicide. At Whiddon Criminal Defense, our Monroe violent crime lawyer knows how to challenge facts surrounding the arrest and build a solid case that will give you the best chance of beating your charges or getting them reduced so sentencing is not as harsh. Call us now at 318-387-2776 or reach out to us online to schedule a free case review with our skilled attorney and to learn more about how we can help.