Idaho & Washington Murder Defense Law Firm
At Mosman Law Offices, we are aware of the severity of a murder charge and the life-altering consequences involved in a murder conviction. We are here to provide you with dedicated legal defense regardless of the circumstances involved. We know how much is at stake when you are facing murder charges or are under investigation for murder. It is important that you have a lawyer present to protect your rights and best interest when working with law enforcement. Mosman Law Offices is here to help you and represent you in your defense.
Idaho defines murder as the unlawful killing of a human being (including, but not limited to, a human embryo or fetus) with malice aforethought. (Idaho Code §18-4001). There are two categories of murder in Idaho: murder in the first degree and murder in the second degree.
First Degree Murder: Like most states, Idaho defines first degree murder as an unlawful killing perpetrated by any kid of willful, deliberate and premediated killing. Idaho lists a number of other circumstances in which a murder is considered first degree murder, such as:
- a murder perpetrated by poison, lying in wait, or torture.
- any murder of a peace officer, executive officer, officer of the court, fireman, or prosecuting attorney who was acting in the lawful discharge of his official duty
- any murder committed by a person under sentence for murder in the first or second degree
- any murder committed in the perpetration of, or attempt to perpetrate, aggravated battery on a child under 12, arson, rape, robbery, burglary, kidnapping or mayhem, or an act of terrorism
- any murder committed by a person incarcerated in a penal institution upon a person employed by the penal institution, another inmate, or visitor to the penal institution
- any murder committed by a person while escaping or trying to escape from a penal institution
Second Degree Murder: In Idaho, any murder that is not listed as a first degree murder is considered second degree murder.
Murder in the first degree is punished by a mandatory life sentence or may be punishable by death. In order to impose the death penalty, the prosecuting attorney must file a notice of intent to seek the death penalty. If the death penalty is not imposed, then the court shall impose a life sentence with a minimum period of confinement of 10 years before the offender becomes eligible for parole.
Murder in the second degree is punishable by a mandatory minimum prison sentence of ten years and the imprisonment may extend to life (unlike murder in the first degree, a life sentence is not mandatory)
Mosman Law Offices is available for consultation in murder and assault cases in Washington and Idaho.
RCW 9A.32.010 provides: “Homicide is the killing of a human being by the act, procurement, or omission of another, death occurring at any time, and is either (1) murder, (2) homicide by abuse, (3) manslaughter, (4) excusable homicide, or (5) justifiable homicide.”
Like most states, Washington has two degree of murder, murder in the first degree and murder in the second degree.
Murder in the First Degree: Washington provides a number of ways in which murder in the first degree may be committed. RCW 9A.32.030 states that a person is guilty of murder in the first degree when:
- With a premeditated intent to cause the death of another person, he or she causes the death of such person or of a third person; or
- Under circumstances manifesting an extreme indifference to human life, he or she engages in conduct which creates a grave risk of death to any person, and thereby causes the death of a person; or
- He or she commits or attempts to commit the crime of either (1) robbery in the first or second degree, (2) rape in the first or second degree, (3) burglary in the first degree, (4) arson in the first or second degree, or (5) kidnapping in the first or second degree, and in the course of or in furtherance of such crime or in immediate flight therefrom, he or she, or another participant, causes the death of a person other than one of the participants
Murder in the Second Degree: Washington provides a number of ways in which murder in the second degree may be committed. RCW 9A.32.050 states that a person is guilty of murder in the second degree when:
- With intent to cause the death of another person but without premeditation, he or she causes the death of such person or of a third person; or
- He or she commits or attempts to commit any felony, including assault, other than those enumerated in RCW 9A.32.030(1)(c), and, in the course of and in furtherance of such crime or in immediate flight therefrom, he or she, or another participant, causes the death of a person other than one of the participants; except that in any prosecution under this subdivision (1)(b) in which the defendant was not the only participant in the underlying crime, if established by the defendant by a preponderance of the evidence, it is a defense that the defendant:
- Did not commit the homicidal act or in any way solicit, request, command, importune, cause, or aid the commission thereof; and
- Was not armed with a deadly weapon, or any instrument, article, or substance readily capable of causing death or serious physical injury; and
- Had no reasonable grounds to believe that any other participant was armed with such a weapon, instrument, article, or substance; and
- Had no reasonable grounds to believe that any other participant intended to engage in conduct likely to result in death or serious physical injury.
We can help protect your legal rights under the law.