South Carolina defines murder as the killing of a person with malice aforethought. Malice aforethought requires the doing of a wrongful act intentionally and without just cause or excuse. Malice aforethought does not require ill will or hate for the victim but rather a general recklessness for the life of the victim. All that is needed for murder is that one conceived the design to commit an assault or battery upon the victim and as a consequence the victim dies.

A similar crime to murder is manslaughter. Manslaughter is defined as a “heat of passion” killing. The main difference between murder and manslaughter is premeditation, where you intend to commit the killing in murder but not in manslaughter.

The penalty for murder and manslaughter carries jail time that could reach life in prison or the death penalty. In order for a person to be convicted of these crimes, the state must meet the burden of proof required for each crime. The state must prove the assault and the death occurring from it as well as the time and place of the assault and time and place of the death.

The law requires that defendants be treated as innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. Unfortunately, justice is not always done. Your life, liberty and freedom are on the line when you are facing charges of this nature, the very things the Constitution grants you.

Can you imagine serving a life sentence for a crime you didn’t commit? Would you want to take that chance? You need an attorney by your side to ensure your defense is properly portrayed before the court and a jury of your peers. Depending upon the circumstances of the crime committed, your case may never have to reach trial.

Your attorneys at Axelrod & Associates, P.A. are well-acquainted with South Carolina laws regarding murder, and they will take the facts of your case and match them to the law to determine your best defense. Your attorneys at Axelrod & Associates, P.A. will employ whatever experts are needed.

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Your defense against murder or manslaughter charges begins now. Call 843-353-3449 or complete our contact form for a free initial consultation. We have offices in Myrtle Beach, Rock Hill and Little River.

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