Voluntary manslaughter is a homicide done because the perpetrator was provoked into killing the victim. It is different than murder. Murder is a homicide done with malice and usually premeditation. A person plans, thinks, and intends to commit homicide. Homicide is the legal term for the killing of a human being.
What Is Voluntary Manslaughter in North Carolina?
Voluntary manslaughter in North Carolina is defined as homicide done in the heat of the moment. This form of homicide is not planned, but is done because the person is provoked. By being provoked, the person is pushed beyond their breaking point. This causes them to kill in a sudden, violent fit of rage.
What Is the Difference Between Involuntary Manslaughter and Voluntary Manslaughter?
The difference between voluntary manslaughter and involuntary manslaughter is the intention of the perpetrator at the time of the killing. With voluntary manslaughter, the perpetrator wants to kill the victim. Involuntary manslaughter, on the other hand, is a homicide caused by reckless or criminal negligence. The person can also be charged with involuntary manslaughter when their actions are a complete accident. Prosecutors may determine the person charged with the crime placed the victim in a dangerous situation. That dangerous situation caused the victim’s death.
What Is the Provocation Defense?
The provocation defense is a defense used in murder cases where the defendant claims they did not have the requisite mindset to commit murder because the victim provoked them. In other words, the perpetrator did not commit murder because they committed homicide due to being blinded by rage, rather than methodically planning to kill the person. If this defense is successfully proven, then any murder charges that a defendant is facing will be lowered to voluntary manslaughter.
What Is the Penalty for Voluntary Manslaughter in North Carolina?
Voluntary manslaughter is a Class D felony in North Carolina. The punishment for a Class D felony is 51 to 64 months in prison.
Should I Contact a Lawyer?
Voluntary manslaughter is a serious crime that is punished harshly. Contact a North Carolina lawyer immediately if you are suspected or accused of manslaughter in North Carolina.