The Difference Between Murder And Manslaughter In New York By Michael Joseph on October 16, 2010

The difference between a murder conviction and a manslaughter conviction can mean a drastic difference in the amount of prison time that a New York criminal defendant receives.

Under New York law, a person is guilty of second-degree murder when, with intent to cause the death of another person, he or she causes the death of that person under Penal Law 125.25[1]. A person is guilty of second-degree manslaughter when he or she “recklessly causes the death of another person” under New York Penal Law 125.15[1]). A person acts “intentionally” when his or her conscious objective is to cause death under New York Penal Law 15.05[1]), and a person acts “recklessly” when he or she “is aware of and consciously disregards a substantial and unjustifiable risk that [death] will occur.

Manslaughter is a lesser included offense of the murder charge. New York criminal defense lawyers must be familiar with these distinctions and what is required to get a lesser included offense jury instruction.

A defendant is entitled to have the jury consider a lesser included offense of a charged count by showing that the offense is a “lesser included offense” of the charged crime and that a reasonable view of the evidence supports a finding that the defendant committed the lesser crime but not the greater.

Related to This

The Law Office of Michael H. Joseph, PLLC

Law Office of Michael H. Joseph, PLLC

The Law Office of Michael H. Joseph, PLLC has been helping injured victims recover compensation for their injuries for over a decade. Our attorneys are members of several prestigious organizations, including: 

  • New York State Trial Lawyers Association
  • American Association for Justice
  • New York County Bar Association
  • Westchester County Bar Association

To request your free initial consultation with our team, call our New York City office at (212) 858-0503 or our White Plains office at (914) 574-8330. You can also request a case review online.

Contact Us Today

Rate, Review & Explore

Social Accounts Sprite

New York City Office

535 5th Ave
Ste 2520
New York, NY 10017

Open Today 8:30am - 6:00pm

White Plains Office

203 E Post Rd
White Plains, NY 10601

Open Today 8:30am - 6:00pm

What is the best time for you?

Add additional time

Which location would you prefer?

Tell us a bit about yourself...

(212) 858-0503 Send a message