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Archive for the ‘violence crimes’ tag

Voluntary Manslaughter Charges in Illinois

November 14th, 2018 at 9:10 pm

IL defense lawyerVoluntary manslaughter is the intentional killing of an unborn child or acting in a way that would cause harm or death to an unborn child. It is not to be confused with involuntary manslaughter, which is the unintentional killing of another person, not a fetus. Voluntary manslaughter in Illinois was formerly one and the same as second-degree murder: the intentional killing of another person on-the-spot or in the heat of passion (meaning that the killing was not premeditated). However, the law currently recognizes this type of homicide simply as second-degree murder, not voluntary homicide. Today’s law is such that voluntary manslaughter is only charged when the victim is an unborn child. It is akin to second-degree murder of an unborn child, a very serious crime.

Definition of Voluntary Manslaughter

As per Illinois 720 ILCS 5/9-2.1, voluntary manslaughter is:

  • Causing the death of an unborn child by acting “under a sudden and intense passion resulting from serious provocation” by another person whom the defendant tries to kill, but in so doing the defendant “negligently or accidentally causes the death of the unborn child”; or
  • Intentionally or knowingly causing the death of an unborn child.

Example of Voluntary Manslaughter Vs. Involuntary Manslaughter

A Schaumburg, Illinois man killed a mother of four, who was 12 weeks pregnant when he crushed her between his pickup truck and her vehicle, which was stalled and was being pushed along the side of the road, as reported by the Daily Herald. A dashboard camera showed the man throwing a vodka bottle into the woods after he hit and killed the woman and refused a breath test. As such, he was charged with driving under the influence and causing the death of the woman, an offense that is punishable by up to 14 years (more if there are other aggravating factors such as the crash occurring in a construction zone). The offense he committed was involuntary manslaughter of the mother. He was not additionally charged with voluntary manslaughter for killing the fetus because he was most likely unaware that the woman was pregnant.

In another case, a Peoria, Illinois man was convicted of voluntary manslaughter when he allegedly body slammed his girlfriend during an argument, causing the death of her unborn child. He was also charged with domestic battery, aggravated battery, and aggravated domestic battery. He was charged with voluntary manslaughter because he acted in a manner that would cause a strong probability of harm or death to the fetus.

A Rolling Meadows Criminal Defense Lawyer Can Help

Any type of homicide or crime that causes harm or death to a child or unborn child is extremely serious. If you have been charged with voluntary manslaughter or another crime of violence, contact dedicated Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney Christopher M. Cosley today at 847-394-3200.

 

Sources:

https://www.pjstar.com/news/20180308/peorian-convicted-of-killing-girlfriends-unborn-child

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/documents/072000050K9-2.1.htm

https://www.dailyherald.com/news/20181010/schaumburg-man-charged-with-dui-in-crash-that-killed-pregnant-mother-of-four

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