Virginia Man Charged with Involuntary Manslaughter After Killing Pedestrian
A man from Waynesboro, Virginia, faces criminal charges for involuntary manslaughter after killing a pedestrian, reported The News Leader.
The accident in question occurred at approximately 10:30 p.m. on July 3, 2018. At that time, the man was driving in Verona near the intersection of Laurel Hill and Dunsmore roads. That is when the man ran into and subsequently killed a 41-year-old Verona woman.
After striking the Verona woman, the Waynesboro man stopped his vehicle and waited for emergency personnel to arrive. After police officers arrived at the scene, the man registered a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.10. As a result, the authorities charged the man with involuntary manslaughter.
While the Waynesboro man awaits his day in court, it seems like an appropriate time to review Virginia definitions of and penalties for involuntary manslaughter crimes.
Virginia Definition of Involuntary Manslaughter
The definition of involuntary manslaughter appears in Code of Virginia Section 18.2-36.1. There are two elements to this crime.
First, the offender must violate a specific section of Virginia DUI laws. Specifically, the offender must operate a car or other vehicle while impaired by:
- Drugs or similar narcotic substances; or
- A combination of alcohol or drugs.
Second, the offender’s action must result in the death of another person. Though it is vital to note that Section 18.2-36.1 only addresses the unintentional death of another person. If the offender intentionally kills another person, then other homicide charges could be more appropriate.
Virginia Penalties for Involuntary Manslaughter
Involuntary manslaughter is a Class 5 felony under Code of Virginia Section 18.2-36. The criminal penalties include one to 10 years in prison, $2,500 in fines and driver’s license revocation under Code of Virginia Section 46.2-391. There is also the possibility of additional homicide charges, depending on the circumstances of the offense.
Virginia Definition of Aggravated Involuntary Manslaughter
Section 18.2-36.1 also defines the offense of aggravated involuntary manslaughter in Virginia. The aggravated version of this crime only applies in extreme circumstances. The offender must demonstrate a reckless disregard for human life by acting in an extremely dangerous manner. If the offender kills another person in the process, then they may face charges for aggravated involuntary manslaughter.
Virginia Penalties for Aggravated Involuntary Manslaughter
Aggravated involuntary manslaughter is a felony crime under Section 18.2-36.1. The criminal penalties include maximum sentence is 20 years in prison — with a mandatory minimum of one year — as well as driver’s license revocation. There is also the possibility of additional homicide charges, depending on the circumstances of the offense.
Do You Need Legal Help?
If you have legal questions involuntary manslaughter or other DUI offenses in Virginia, it is extremely valuable to seek advice from a trustworthy criminal defense attorney. The attorneys at Simms Showers LLP , servicing Leesburg, Winchester, Fairfax, and Manassas, have a deep understanding of criminal law, including involuntary manslaughter and other DUI offenses. If you need legal help with criminal defense, contact us today for a free initial consultation.