Fullerton Vehicular Manslaughter Lawyer
Defending You When Your Rights are Endangered
Vehicular homicide involving a driving under the influence (DUI) accusation carries the threat of serious penalties upon conviction. If you have been charged with or are under investigation for a drunk driving accident that resulted in the death of another person — which is known as a "Watson Murder" in California —your rights, freedom, driving privileges, and future wellbeing are all jeopardized. It is time to speak with a dedicated Fullerton vehicular manslaughter lawyer to set things right and to take the pressure out of your situation.
The Law Offices of Jacqueline Goodman is led by the renowned Attorney Jacqueline Goodman, who is one of only a slim number of Board-Certified Criminal Law Specialists in Fullerton. When you work with her, you are enlisting the help of a professional who will work tirelessly to build an effective vehicular manslaughter defense for your case. Her goal is to minimize or entirely eliminate the potential penalties that could be used against you upon conviction.
Being convicted of vehicular manslaughter could result in:
- Lengthy imprisonment
- High fines paid to state
- Money paid to victim’s family
- Suspension of your driver’s license
How to Defend Against Vehicular Manslaughter Charges
Vehicular manslaughter cases are often a combination of DUI law and homicide law. Attorney Goodman is well-versed in both of these areas of law, allowing her to build a defense for your case. She uses tried-and-true defense strategies but also thinks outside the norms to find unique approaches that lead to impressive case results.
Attorney Jacqueline Goodman may build your case while considering:
- Search and seizure issues
- Miranda rights violations
- Field sobriety tests
- Blood alcohol tests
- Police reports
- And more
She puts the burden of proof on the opposition. If the prosecution wants to secure a conviction, then they will really need to fight for it!
Penalties for Vehicular Manslaughter in Fullerton
The penalties for a vehicular manslaughter cases are defined under Penal Code 192(c) PC, which describes the offense as a wobbler. The district attorney who manages your charges may opt to select either a misdemeanor or a felony depending on the facts of your specific case and your criminal history, especially in regard to your previous DUI convictions.
Some of the worst potential penalties if convicted can include:
- 16 months to 4 years in the California State Prison
- Additional and consecutive prison sentence of 3 to 6 years depending on extent of injuries inflicted
- One additional "strike" on your record due to California's Three Strike's Law
- $10,000 in fines
- 18 to 30 month alcohol/drug program
- Habitual Traffic Offender (HTO) status for 3 years
There are also specific penalties for cases that are categorized under Penal Code 191.5(a), which is California's "gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated law." If you are determined to have caused a vehicular death due to gross negligence, your penalties can include up to 10 years in prison, or 15 years to life in state prison if you have two or more prior DUI convictions.
About the Watson Murder Rule
In California, when a drunk driving accident results in the death of a person, regardless of whether the victim was in another vehicle, in the car with the drunk driver, riding a bicycle, or walking, it is referred to as a Watson Murder. The Watson Murder Rule involves the theory of "implied malice," so the prosecution may attempt to use the fact that a DUI suspect has previously been convicted of drunk driving to demonstrate that the act was not merely an accident but an act of malice. This charge is usually reserved for repeat DUI offenders who theoretically should know about the dangers of drunk driving.
Prepare Your Defense Today – Call Now
You can begin your vehicular manslaughter defense case with a free consultation from The Law Offices of Jacqueline Goodman in Fullerton. There are a lot of factors that go into every case. Do not try to juggle them alone. Rely on Attorney Goodman to be your guide and defender during this difficult time.
Contact her today to learn how you could find freedom from your criminal charges.