Costa Mesa Murder cases are handled in two ways – as Murder in The First Degree or Murder in the Second Degree, each of which carries its own penalties and elements for prosecution. Here’s an overview:
Costa Mesa First Degree Murder or California Penal Code 187 is intentionally taking the life of someone else. The legal consequence for this crime is a minimum of 25 years imprisonment to a maximum life sentence. The prosecution must prove that either:
1. The murder was premeditated, and that the offender had a plan in place to take someone’s life. This would need to be followed through, otherwise the crime would be prosecuted as an attempted murder.
2. The offender used extreme torture or a deadly device when committing the crime
3. The offender was involved in another felony offense when the murder took place
Costa Mesa Second Degree Murder on the other hand is when no premeditation is involved, and that another crime was being committed at the time of the killing. These situations always warrant a consultation from a skilled murder defense lawyer regardless of the circumstances. The legal consequences for 2nd degree murder include a minimum of fifteen years in prison to a maximum life imprisonment.
Enhanced sentencing is given to offenders who committed murder for financial benefits. Other examples of aggravating murder cases include taking the life of an executive officer.
In these cases, offenders face capital punishment which carries no possibility of parole.
The following could be considered an example of first degree murder, to help distinguish first-degree from second-degree murder:
Gabriel got into a huge fight with his wife, who is the mother of four of his children. Gabriel has spent the last decade working two jobs to support his wife and kids while his wife has been taking care of the children. Gabriel recently lost his job and now his wife is threatening to leave Gabriel, take the kids, and move somewhere that Gabriel will never be able to see them. She kicks him out of the house and tells him to come back in the morning to watch the kids so she can go out and make arrangements. Gabriel leaves, comes back with tools, and messes with the breaks on his wife’s car. The next day, his wife uses the car and gets into a fatal car accident when the breaks do not work. The incident was traced back to Gabriel and he now faces charges for first-degree murder.
How does a criminal defense attorney prove innocence to murder? This is challenging but quite feasible nonetheless. Our Costa Mesa attorneys can pair with private investigators, DNA experts, and research the scene to get evidence that works in a murder suspect’s favor.
If you are facing Murder in Costa Mesa, the criminal defense attorneys at MacGregor & Collins can help you. We will bring superior legal experience to aid you in this challenging time. Call us today at (888) 250-2865.