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What Is Negligent Homicide?

There are different categories of homicide, which refers to the murder of a person as perpetrated by another individual. Homicide can be considered criminal or non-criminal. The latter refers to justifiable homicide such as the instance when murder is committed as part of self-defense. However, all other types of homicide are considered criminal such as negligent homicide.

Negligent homicide is the murder of an individual due to the failure of another to exercise reasonable care. Examples of negligent homicide include murder due to an individual driving under the influence of alcohol. Negligent homicide is an unintentional act of committing murder, but the person responsible for failing to exercise more care is liable for his or her actions. Negligence is determined by the lack of malice and premeditation involved in a murder.

Because it is a criminal offense that results in the death of an individual, negligent homicide is an act that requires extraordinary circumstances given that the individual who perpetrated the act did not intend for a murder to occur.

Each state has its own definition and conditions that determine what a negligent homicide is. However, negligent homicide is generally less severe that first or second degree murder since it was not an intended act. Because of the circumstances involved in a negligent homicide, an individual convicted of this criminal offense may be subject to a less severe sentencing. It is common for convicted individuals of negligent homicide to be sentenced to a period of imprisonment rather than be subject to a capital punishment.

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