What Makes Murder Different From Manslaughter? :: Temecula, Murrieta, Hemet Defense Attorney

Anyone who watches cop dramas or reads legal thrillers will hear the terms murder and manslaughter bandied about quite a lot. If you're looking at the results of the crime there doesn't seem to be a difference; someone is dead in both cases. The question that needs to be answered is under what circumstances that act was committed.


Murder is by far the worse crime of the two listed. It is the illegal, intentional killing of another human being with malice aforethought. Put in non-legal terms, murder is when you think about killing someone and decide to do it purposefully and intentionally.


Manslaughter is different from murder in that it's often referred to as a crime of passion. You still illegally kill someone, but in this case the killing comes after you have been provoked by some instance. There was no forethought put into the occasion.

An Example of Murder Versus Manslaughter

So, let's give a concrete example. Let's say a husband comes home unexpectedly and finds his wife in bed with another man. If the husband pulls his gun and kills that man immediately it could be argued it was a crime of passion; if the gun had not been to hand right then it wouldn't have happened. If the man runs away, though, and the husband takes the time to find out who that man was, where he lives, etc., and then deliberately drives to his house days later to kill him then that would be considered murder. There was thought put into it, and it was a deliberate act.

If you or someone you know is caught up in either a murder or a manslaughter case it's important to get them knowledgeable representation as soon as possible. To get our experts on the case simply contact us today!

Our law office works with individuals who have been arrested in Temecula, Murrieta, Menifee, Wildomar, Lake Elsinore, Perris, Hemet, Banning, Corona or Riverside. We can help!

Related Posts
  • Negligent Discharge of a Firearm: Navigating the Complexities of Penal Code 246.3(a) Read More
  • Romanian Criminal Defense Lawyer in California | Nationwide Federal Cases Read More
  • Overview of the California Juvenile Justice System Read More