Defending yourself against manslaughter charges

A person charged in the accidental killing of another can either be charged with voluntary or involuntary manslaughter, depending on the circumstances of the situation and usually revolving around the degree of reckless and negligent behavior on the part of the defendant.  Defenses against manslaughter charges can be similar to other homicide charges, but there are a few other options as well.

An experienced manslaughter defense attorney may choose to use one or more of the following strategies in defending their client:

Self-Defense.  This is perhaps the most common of all manslaughter defenses.  An attorney must be able to prove that a defendant reasonably suspected that they were in imminent danger of being killed or seriously harmed.  They must also be able to prove that there was not an over-reaction on the amount of force used to protect ones self.  Sometimes, in a murder case, when this defense is used, a charge may be reduced from murder down to a plea of manslaughter, resulting in a lesser penalty.

Accidental.  A defendant may be able to show that the death was the result of an accident.  In cases where a dismissal may not be the outcome, it may be possible to have a charge reduced from one of voluntary manslaughter, which has an element of intent attached to it, to one of involuntary manslaughter, which only has some form of recklessness or neglect.

Innocence.  A prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that a person did actually commit manslaughter.  In some cases, it is possible to attach an alibi to a case or to introduce evidence that would create a reasonable doubt, leading to a dismissal of charges.

Cates & Garvey Law Group proudly serves clients in Phoenix, Tempe, Glendale, Scottsdale, Mesa and surrounding Arizona communities

Financial crimes involve deceit and subterfuge

Financials crimes, often times referred to as white collar crimes, are a form of theft that involves taking money or property and using them illegally for the purpose of trying to gain some kind of benefit.  It is a very broad category of crime and can take on many forms, including:

  • Identity Theft
  • Fraud
  • Tax Evasion
  • Mortgage Fraud
  • Bribery
  • Bank Fraud
  • Embezzlement
  • Money Laundering
  • Racketeering
  • Securities Fraud
  • Forgery
  • Insurance Fraud
  • Telemarketing Fraud
  • Ponzi Schemes

While each of these has its own unique traits, all of them involve some form of deceit or subterfuge, relying on another person or another business’s trust.  What is also common to all of these types of crimes is that they are generally complex in nature and will require a high degree of financial forensic work, meaning that a case may take a long time to come to trial or be resolved.

A financial crimes attorney may mount one or more possible defense strategies on behalf of a client, depending on the circumstances of a case.

One of the more common defense is claiming there is insufficient evidence to prove a financial crime has been committed.  A prosecutor has the burden of proof and as long as a degree of reasonable doubt can be used in a case, it could lead to a decision in the defendant’s favor.

Another defense is the absence of intent to commit a crime.  For a financial crime to take place, there generally must be an intent to deceive as part of the burden of proof required by the prosecutor.  For example, if you accidentally use a friend’s credit card, unless it can be shown that the act was intentional, in which case you could face charges.

A lesser used defense is entrapment which takes place when the government or law enforcement compels someone to commit a crime they would have not done so otherwise.  Prosecutors will generally argue that a defendant was likely to commit the crime anyway, leading to a murky overall defense strategy.

Cates & Garvey Law Group proudly serves clients in Phoenix, Tempe, Glendale, Scottsdale, Mesa and surrounding Arizona communities.