Homicide crimes in Oklahoma have been steadily climbing over the last few years. In 2014 Oklahoma was the 10th most violent state in the U.S. and in 2016 homicides hit a decade high. As a result, many courts have started taking homicide crimes even more seriously than before. This article will explain the elements of homicide and what the Oklahoma penalties are for such a crime.
Homicide Statutes in Oklahoma
The first and most basic definition of homicide crimes is under Title 21 §691. It is “…the killing of one human by another.” Do not let the simplicity of this definition fool you. There are five categories of homicide that you can face charges on. These are:
- First Degree Murder
- Second Degree Murder
- Excusable Death
- Justifiable Killing
In order for the last two—justifiable or excusable killings—to be a valid defense to your actions, you must commit them in a lawful way. Therefore, the act cannot occur with the use of excessive force and they cannot be offensive. Using one of these defenses means you act as a reaction to the victim’s violent behavior and your actions are defensive.
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Penalties and Sentencing for Homicide Crimes
Because Oklahoma Law breaks this crime into categories, each category faces a different penalty. As you can imagine, the more severe the crime is, then the more severe the sentence is. For example, first degree murder crimes are subject to the death penalty or to life imprisonment. However, second degree charges are only subject to a minimum of 10 years with a maximum of life. The death penalty is no longer an option. Manslaughter is even lighter with a possible 2 to 4 years in prison and fines up to $1,000. Finally, if you effectively assert a justifiable or excusable homicide defense, you will face no charges.
OKC Homicide Crimes Attorneys
Let our OKC Criminal Defense Attorneys fight for your rights if you are facing murder charges. We understand the gravity of the allegations and will work to provide you with the best possible defense under your particular circumstances. Your first Phone consultation with us is free. 405 367.8710