Murder O.C.G.A. 16-5-1
Fight Your Atlanta Georgia Murder Charge with a Team of Tough Lawyers
You probably never thought you would care about Georgia criminal statute 16-5-1. However, current circumstances have you trying to figure what to do to defend yourself on a murder charge in Atlanta Georgia.
What is considered Murder in Atlanta Georgia?
The general definition of murder is homicide plus malice. Homicide is the unlawful killing of a human being. The alleged victim is killed with malice. Malice is the intent to harm.
Georgia law describes murder as the unlawful killing of another with malice. The malice may be implied or expressed. It just has to be the cause of the alleged victim’s death. For example, expressed malice is the deliberate intent to unlawfully take another person’s like by external circumstances.
This means you are accused of thinking about murdering the alleged victim. You then decided to allegedly go one step further and plan the killing. Your last step in completing the crime, according to a prosecutor, was to actually kill the alleged victim.
Implied malice means that circumstances happened that did not allow you to plan and execute your plan to allegedly kill someone. This refers to no intent kill. Instead, you are accused of not caring about the safety or a human being or being so overcome with emotions that you allegedly just killed the individual.
You can be Charged with Murder in Atlanta Georgia when You did not Kill Anyone
Murder requires more than thinking about committing the crime. You have to act on it and attempt to kill an alleged victim. In some circumstances, you may be charged with this offense and you did not harm anyone.
In Atlanta Georgia, this happens when you allegedly commit a felony. During that felony crime, someone is killed. Since you were committing a crime, you are charged with the more serious charge of murder too. This is called Felony Murder Rule.
For instance, you and a friend allegedly decide to burglarize a home. While inside the home, your friend is scared by some movement and shoots. They actually shoot the homeowner. They are charged with murder. Since you were burglarizing the home too, you are also charged with murder.
The Penalty for Murder in Atlanta Georgia Varies
The exact punishment for murder varies. If you are convicted of this crime, you can be sentenced to:
- Life in prison
- Life in prison without the possibility of parole
You can also be charged and convicted of assisting in a suicide. Assisted suicide is considered murder in Atlanta Georgia. The criminal punishment for this type of crime is one to five years in prison.
Common Defenses to an Atlanta Georgia Murder Charge
It may not seem like there is any to prove your innocence or avoid the harsh consequences of a murder conviction. There is more than one way to fight a murder charge. The most common way is to present a defense.
You have two broad categories of murder defenses. The first category is showing that the state is prosecuting the wrong individual for the crime. The second category involves you admitting to killing the alleged victim. However, presenting evidence that you were justified in killing them.
Some examples of these defenses include:
- Self-defense: You are legally allowed to protect yourself from harm in Georgia. For instance, if someone is coming at you with a knife, you are allowed to try to avoid being stabbed by punching or kicking the individual. Self-defense a defense to murder because you were protecting yourself against the alleged victim.
- Actual innocence: You are actually innocent of the charge. This is the defense that you did not kill the alleged victim.
- Actual alibi: Another type of actual innocent defense. This where you show that you were not at the crime scene when the alleged victim died. You typically provide witness statements and other evidence to show that you are completely innocent of the crime.
- Mistaken identity: You claim that someone else committed the crime. Maybe witnesses or police picked you as the murderer instead of the real killer. You present evidence to get the jury to understand why your defense is better than the state’s alleged proof.
- Defense of another person. You are legally allowed to protect yourself against harm. You are also allowed to protect other people, even strangers, from the same type of harm. If the alleged victim was harming another individual you can step in and help the real victim. If a death occurs you are justified and cannot be convicted of the crime.
You have other defenses available to you other than the ones listed above. Make sure that you pick a defense strategy that can help you prove your innocence. You have the right to attack the state’s claim that you are allegedly guilty of this crime.
Contact Georgia Defense Force, LLC to Fight Your Atlanta Georgia Murder Charge
Unfortunately, you have heard about people being convicted of murder and they are actually innocent. Prosecutors typically do not work to prove your innocence. They are more interested in getting a conviction and moving on to the next case.
For this reason, you need a legal defense team devoted to proving your innocence. We will build a strong defense to weaken the state’s case. We will also negotiate with the state to get the murder charge reduced or dropped.
If you or your loved one is facing a murder charge, contact us.