What is Murder?
No criminal offence is as serious as murder. If you or someone you know is facing a Murder charge, Abbey Lawyers has the experience, resources and track record to take on the case.
Murder is defined as the intentional and unjustified killing of another human being. Below, we describe the two broad types of Murder charges under the Criminal Code: First Degree and Second Degree.
First Degree Murder
These murders are typically deliberate and premeditated. However, they need not always be and can involve murders during the course of “crimes of domination” such as a sexual assault, kidnapping, taking a hostage, or the killing of a peace officer. A conviction for First Degree Murder carries a mandatory life sentence without the possibility of parole for 25 years. If an individual commits multiple murders, the prosecution can seek consecutive sentences.
Second Degree Murder
Involves an intentional killing that was not pre-planned and did not occur during the “crimes of domination” described under First Degree Murder. A conviction for Second Degree Murder also carries a mandatory life sentence, but the sentencing judge has the ability to allow parole eligibility as early as 10 years into the sentence.
This refers to a killing as a result of a criminal act, where there was no specific intention to cause death. It is considered a lesser, but included offence of First or Second Degree Murder. When an intentional killing occurred in circumstances where the Accused was provoked or severely intoxicated, a defence of Provocation or Intoxication may be argued. Given the current state of the law, however, Murder cases are not often reduced to Manslaughter as a result of Provocation or Intoxication.