A person usually has to have been the driver of a vehicle in order to be charged with vehicular manslaughter, under California Penal Code 192(c). If someone were to drop a huge boulder over the freeway overpass, causing several cars to crash and someone to die, then that person would definitely be held responsible, and theories related to vehicular manslaughter would be used to charge them. If an act is not under the vehicular manslaughter vehicle code section, then there are other penal codes or vehicle code sections that the prosecutors will be able to use to hold them responsible for the death.
The Penalties For A Conviction Of Vehicular Manslaughter In California
There are a whole host of penalties for a conviction of vehicular manslaughter in California. First, however, the prosecutors are going to have to decide whether they are dealing with a case in which probation is warranted.
If they are, then the person will be looking at anywhere from no time in jail at all, to 365 days in jail. If it is a felony vehicular manslaughter case, then the person could be facing up to six years in prison. Due to the current state of overcrowding in LA County, it would be questionable whether someone would serve that time in the county jail.
Defenses To Vehicular Manslaughter Charges
One possible defense to vehicular manslaughter charges is that the defendant did not cause the accident. In other words, even though they might have been doing something reckless, someone else was acting recklessly as well and it was that party who caused the accident.
Another defense is that the party who died caused their own death by the way in which they were operating their motor vehicle. When it comes to defenses for vehicular manslaughter, the attorney, prosecutor, and judge are going to have to look at the surrounding circumstances in order to determine who is responsible, who is at fault, and who is a substantial factor. Juries are able to resolve many of these cases when there is an argument between the defense and prosecution about who is responsible for a death.
For more information on Vehicular Manslaughter Charges For Non-Driver, a free initial consultation is your next step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling the Hedding Law Firm at (213) 542-0940 today.