Vehicular homicide is a severe offense in Ohio. If you are charged with vehicular homicide, you are about to face a challenging battle, and that is before factors like driving under the influence are considered. The best thing to do is to hire a skilled Cincinnati vehicular homicide lawyer.
At Patituce & Associates, we have garnered extensive experience and skills working on violent crime cases. We will fight aggressively to ensure you are treated fairly and your rights are protected. Contact us at 513-657-2440 and let us help you get the best possible outcome in your vehicular homicide case.
What Is Vehicular Homicide?
According to the law, in Ohio, vehicular homicide includes the unlawful termination of another person’s pregnancy or causing another individual’s death while operating a motor vehicle. Aggravated vehicular homicide is the most serious offense under this section, followed by vehicular homicide, then vehicular manslaughter.
The presence of specific elements is what differentiates these offense levels. You will face a vehicular homicide charge if you cause a death on the road due to your failure to abide by speed limits in a construction zone or use reasonable care as you drive.
Are There Types of Vehicular Homicide That Do Not Involve DUI?
In most fatal DUI accidents, the offender is charged with vehicular homicide. Other types of vehicular homicide that do not involve a DUI include:
- Causing someone’s death while operating your vehicle in a reckless manner
- Excessive speeding
- Street racing or drag racing
- Attempting stunts
- Driving on the shoulder
Proximate Causes: Intentional Vs. Unintentional
Several factors can contribute to vehicular homicide. In some cases, the proximate causes can be intentional. In other cases, they are unintentional.
The law considers typical careless behavior as an unintentional proximate cause. Examples include running a stop sign or being distracted for a moment.
Intentional proximate cause involves intentional reckless behavior, which is more serious. For instance, if you get behind the wheel while drunk and it results in the death of another individual, your intent will be factored as an element in vehicular homicide.
Types of Vehicular Homicide Charges and Potential Penalties in Ohio
In Ohio, the circumstances of your crash will determine how you are charged.
Vehicular manslaughter involves unintentionally causing the death of another person as a result of committing a minor traffic violation, such as running a red light or speeding. This offense is a second-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to 90 days in jail, fines of up to $750, and license suspension.
If you were driving without a license or on a suspended license or were convicted of vehicular manslaughter, vehicular homicide, or vehicular assault before, you can be sentenced to up to 6 months in jail.
A driver can be charged with vehicular homicide for causing a fatal accident by driving carelessly or by speeding in a construction zone. This is a first-degree misdemeanor. If convicted, the driver faces a maximum sentence of 180 days in jail, a fine of $1,000, and a five-year license suspension in Ohio.
A vehicular homicide is considered a 4th-degree felony if you commit the offense while driving with a suspended license or without a license.
A conviction is punishable by:
- Fine of up to $5,000
- Six to 18 months of incarceration
- Three years to lifetime driver’s license suspension if you have a prior conviction of attempted murder, felonious assault, or a traffic-related homicide
- Two to 10 years of driver’s license suspension if you have a prior conviction for assault, manslaughter, or a traffic-related homicide.
Aggravated Vehicular Homicide
Aggravated vehicular a situation where a driver’s complete disregard for the safety of others led to a fatal accident.
There are two categories of aggravated vehicular homicide in Ohio:
- Aggravated vehicular homicide involving reckless driving is a third-degree felony, punishable by 9 months to 3 years in prison, a fine of up to $10,000, and license suspension for three years up to a lifetime.
- Aggravated vehicular homicide involving DUI/drugged driving or BUI is a second-degree felony, punishable by 2 to 8 years in prison, a fine of up to $15,000, and lifetime license revocation.
What Should I Do If I Am Charged With Vehicular Homicide in Ohio?
If you are charged with vehicular homicide, it would be best to contact a trusted criminal defense lawyer in Cincinnati with experience handling vehicular homicide cases.
At Patituce & Associates, we strive to fight for your rights and freedom. Put our dedication and experience to work for you, and let us fight to get you the best possible case outcome.
Contact Our Cincinnati Vehicular Homicide Lawyers!
A vehicular homicide is a serious offense, and you should not take the charges lightly. Depending on your case’s facts, you can face an extended prison sentence if you are convicted. Get in touch with the skilled Cincinnati vehicular homicide defense attorneys at Patituce & Associates.
We have years of experience working on similar cases and will tailor a personal defense for your case and aggressively fight the system to defend you. To learn more, call us at 513-657-2440 today for a no-cost consultation and case assessment.