Murder/Homicide in Tennessee

The Crime of Murder in Tennessee

Murder, also known as homicide, is a grave crime that has been the subject of scrutiny and punishment in Tennessee’s legal system. If you find yourself facing murder charges in Tennessee, you’ll want an experienced trial lawyer like Attorney David L. Clarke from The Clarke Law Firm to defend your rights and provide you with quality representation.

Tennessee Law and Murder

In Tennessee, the laws surrounding murder are defined under Title 39, Chapter 13 of the Tennessee Code. According to these statutes, murder is the unlawful killing of another person with “malice aforethought.” This means that the act of murder is intentional, and it encompasses both premeditated acts and those committed in the heat of the moment.

Degrees of Murder in Tennessee

Tennessee law recognizes different degrees of murder, each carrying distinct legal consequences:

First-Degree Murder
Under Tennessee law – Tennessee Code Section 39-13-202 – first-degree murder involves any of the following:

● A premeditated and intentional killing of another person

● Killing another person while engaging in first-degree murder, rape, an act of terrorism, burglary, arson, robbery, kidnapping, theft, aggravated rape, or aggravated child neglect.

● Causing the death of another individual through the unauthorized use of a bomb or explosive device.
A conviction for first-degree murder can result in life imprisonment or even the death penalty.

Second-Degree Murder

Under Tennessee Code Section 39-13-210, second-degree murder involves:

● Causing death with intent.

● Causing death through the illegal distribution of drugs.

● Causing death through the illegal distribution, dispensation, or delivery of fentanyl or carfentanil.

This is a Class A felony.

Voluntary Manslaughter

Under Tennessee Code Section 39-13-211, voluntary manslaughter is defined as the intentional killing of another person while in a state of intense emotional distress or provoked to the point where a reasonable person might act irrationally. This is a Class B felony amended by 2023 Tenn. Acts.

Criminally Negligent Homicide

In Tennessee, criminally negligent homicide pertains to any negligent behavior or action that results in the death of another person. This is a Class E felony.

Vehicular Homicide

According to Tennessee law, vehicular homicide is a criminal offense that occurs when a person is fatally injured from being hit by a car, motor vehicle, motorboat, or airplane due to the driver’s reckless actions, which can include factors like intoxication, drag racing, or behavior that poses a significant risk of serious bodily harm or death. Depending on the exact circumstances of your case, you can be charged with a Class B, Class C, or Class D felony.

Reckless Homicide

As outlined in Tennessee Code Section 39-13-215, reckless homicide refers to the act of causing the death of another person through reckless behavior. This is a Class D felony.

Penalties for Conviction

The penalties for murder convictions in Tennessee are severe, reflecting the gravity of the crime. If convicted of first-degree murder, the consequences can be life-altering, including the possibility of a life sentence without parole or even the death penalty. Second-degree murder carries substantial prison time, while voluntary and involuntary manslaughter also leads to significant periods of incarceration.

Given the dire consequences associated with murder convictions, it is absolutely critical to have a skilled and experienced attorney by your side. Attorney David L. Clarke, of The Clarke Law Firm, is dedicated to defending individuals facing murder or homicide charges. With his talent and legal expertise, he will vigorously advocate for your rights, construct a robust defense strategy, and explore all avenues to secure the best possible outcome for your case.

If you are facing murder or homicide charges in Tennessee, you do not have to face this daunting legal battle alone. Contact The Clarke Law Firm today and retain quality representation for your case. Attorney David L. Clarke will stand by your side, fighting relentlessly to achieve the best possible outcome and ensure that your rights are protected. Don’t wait; your future depends on the actions you take today.