Criminally negligent homicide is one of the most serious charges that can arise due to driving under the influence of alcohol. Recently, a Cordova woman was convicted in relation to charges due to an accident that occurred in 2013 when the woman was driving a motor vehicle along the side of Highway 79 in Adamsville. Shortly before Noon on the date of the accident, the motorist’s car swerved into the closed right lane shortly before noon, struck multiple orange cones then collided with the pedestrian.
The pedestrian was later pronounced dead at the scene of the accident, while a passenger in the vehicle was also injured. The motorist was subsequently charged with reckless manslaughter and assault. The driver was also recently charged with criminally negligent homicide and first-degree assault due to the accident.
Applicable Georgia Law
Negligent homicide is a charge made when an individual causes the death of another through criminal negligence. Rather than focus on premeditation like other types of homicide offenses, this charge focuses on the information that the defendant should have known and the risks of which the defendant was aware. Opposing counsel must prove:
- The defendant was aware of an unjustifiable risk,
- That the individual committed an act or omission, and
- A direct link between the negligent action and the death of the victim.
These requirements mean that opposing counsel will argue that drunk driving caused a significant risk of serious bodily injury, that the individual committed the act of driving a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, and that the victim of the victim died directly due to the individual’s operation of a motor vehicle.
Consequences of a Criminally Negligent Homicide
Being charged with a criminally negligent homicide frequently results in an individual facing several years in prison. In the case of many criminally negligent homicide, individuals can also face civil lawsuits in relation to the event in question.
Fortunately, there are several defenses that individuals can argue in response to charges of criminally negligent homicide. One of the most commonly used strategies is attacking opposing counsel’s argument of either causation or awareness by the individual of an unjustifiable risk. In attacking causation, an individual argues that the individual’s driving under the influence was not the direct cause of why the victim died.
Similarly, individuals can attack the risk element by demonstrating that actions or omissions did not constitute an unreasonable risk. Regardless of what defense is used, individuals must understand that when criminally negligent homicide is charged in a driving under the influence context, the preservation of evidence is often particularly important which is one of the main reasons why retaining the services of an experienced DUI attorney can prove essential.
The Assistance of a Strong DUI Defense
Negligent homicides charges is a serious offense and substantial obstacle if made in conviction with other driving under the influence related charges. If you face charges related to a driving under the influence charge, consider contacting a talented Atlanta DUI attorney like the legal counsel at Yeargan & Kert.