It can be difficult facing serious charges, ranging from murder, assault and battery charges, and other violent and non-violent criminal accusations. The nervousness surrounding a trial can only be reduced by having a law firm you can trust by your side. That is where murder lawyers Grand Forks ND come in! Ward K Johnson Law Firm is one of the leading murder law firms Grand Forks ND. We have specialist lawyers who are the best in their fields, ready to represent you in the best way possible.
What are murder charges in the US?
There are 3 main categories of murder in the US. These are:
- First-degree murder – Any murder committed in a pre-planned way, that is both willful and premeditated as a murder. Any murder that occurs while committing another serious crime is considered a “felony murder” and is usually treated as a first-degree murder as well. In these cases, even the felony accomplices of the murderer are culpable.
- Second-degree murder – Intentional murders that were not pre-planned, but the intent to cause harm (or kill) was present.
- Third-degree murder – This is only recognized in Florida, Pennsylvania, and Minnesota. This is when there is intent to cause harm to another, but not to kill them. No pre-meditation is present in these cases.
It is important to note that manslaughter is also a related crime but of a lesser nature.
A killing is deemed a manslaughter when there was no pre-meditation of causing harm and it can be in one of 2 main categories:
- Voluntary manslaughter – This is often called a “crime of passion”, and stems from situations wherein a normal person would “reasonably” be driven to emotional or mental discomfort. This is close to 2nd-degree murder, but the reason for the instigation is what separates the two. For instance, a bar fight leading to death would be 2nd-degree murder but if the fight arose due to the discovery of a cheating partner, that would be manslaughter.
- Involuntary manslaughter – Usually this is due to negligent actions causing unintended death to another. Drunk driving that leads to the death of anyone outside the vehicle is a classic example.
If you find yourself accused of murder, you will need expert lawyers like those in the murder law firm Grand Forks ND. The sheer complexity and stakes of the trial mean that you cannot settle for anything but the best!
Here’s a glimpse of what the murder lawyers Grand Forks ND can offer in such cases:
In cases where the murder can be justified, such as self-defense, defense of property, or defense of another, the murder doesn’t amount to a crime. This is also used when someone kills a person in the line of duty, such as a law-enforcement officer.
In most murder trials, the severity of the crime is a big factor in determining the extent of the sentence. This is where murder lawyers Grand Forks ND can help reduce this! Moving down from first-degree murder to manslaughter can be life-changing for anyone. This can have massive implications not only on sentencing but even on life after.
In many murder-related arrests, police often use coercion or violate regular interrogation procedures in order to elicit a confession. Even if the accused has confessed to the police, the confession can be falsified in court.
Statistically speaking, the most common reason for wrongful convictions in murder trials is often mistaken identity. It is well-known that witness reports can be wrong due to stress, time factors, visibility, etc. Raising reasonable doubt as to the identity of the culprit can often create enough room to even prove complete innocence.
One of the leading murder law firms Grand Forks ND is Ward K Johnson Law Firm. We have a proven track record of successfully defending several clients in murder cases.