A K9 unit in DeKalb County has discovered a fleeing suspect in a vehicular homicide case as he was hidden in a drainpipe.
As a Georgia DUI Lawyer, I have plenty of experience with cases involving vehicular homicide. This is because the base offense of vehicular homicide is some sort of traffic violation - depending on the degree of vehicular homicide.
In today's post, I will outline the law behind the crime of vehicular homicide and demonstrate how the two degrees of the offense differ.
Vehicular Homicide in Georgia
Vehicular homicide in Georgia is defined by law as two separate degrees. The Georgia Code outlines both of the degrees in O.C.G.A. §40-6-393.
- First Degree Vehicular Homicide: A person will be charged with homicide by vehicle in the first degree when, without malice aforethought, a death is caused by the person either unlawfully passing a school bus, reckless driving, fleeing or attempting to elude a police office, or leaving the scene of the accident.
- Second Degree Vehicular Homicide: A person will be charged with homicide by vehicle in the second degree when a death results due to a violation of any other statute other than the ones specified for homicide in the first degree.
The two degrees of vehicular homicide are treated and classified very differently.
Generally second degree vehicular homicide is classified as a misdemeanor. Misdemeanor-grade vehicular homicide happens when a death is the result of a violation of basic traffic laws. A misdemeanor vehicular homicide conviction includes a penalty of up to 12 months in jail and a fine up to $1,000.
On the other hand, first degree vehicular homicide is classified as a felony. Felony-grade vehicular homicide charge occurs when a death is the result of DUI or reckless driving or any of the other offenses listed in the statute above. Convictions of felony-grade vehicular homicide may warrant up to 15 years in prison.
Call our offices today if you or a loved one has been arrested in the state of Georgia for DUI or a related offense.