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Homicidal Offenses

Homicidal offenses in Texas are primarily found in Chapter 19 of the Texas Penal Code.

The paragraphs below highlight the basic elements of these crimes. The full text of the laws can be found by following the links provided. These laws are often quite complicated and contain very specific and detailed definitions, presumptions, enhancements, and exceptions. If you have been charged with one of these crimes, call us at 888-403-0383 and we can discuss all the details of how the law applies in your specific situation.

Homicidal offenses include:

Murder (PC 19.02)

  • A person commits an offense if he:
    • intentionally or knowingly causes the death of an individual;
    • intends to cause serious bodily injury and commits an act clearly dangerous to human life that causes the death of an individual; or
    • commits or attempts to commit a felony, other than manslaughter, and in the course of and in furtherance of the commission or attempt, or in immediate flight from the commission or attempt, he commits or attempts to commit an act clearly dangerous to human life that causes the death of an individual.

Capital Murder (PC 19.03)

  • A person commits an offense if the person commits murder as defined under Section 19.02(b)(1) and:
    • the person murders a peace officer or fireman who is acting in the lawful discharge of an official duty and who the person knows is a peace officer or fireman;
    • the person intentionally commits the murder in the course of committing or attempting to commit kidnapping, burglary, robbery, aggravated sexual assault, arson, obstruction or retaliation, or terroristic threat under Section 22.07(a)(1), (3), (4), (5), or (6);
    • the person commits the murder for remuneration or the promise of remuneration or employs another to commit the murder for remuneration or the promise of remuneration;
    • the person commits the murder while escaping or attempting to escape from a penal institution;
    • the person, while incarcerated in a penal institution, murders another:
      • who is employed in the operation of the penal institution; or
      • with the intent to establish, maintain, or participate in a combination or in the profits of a combination;
    • the person:
      • while incarcerated for an offense under this section or Section 19.02, murders another; or
      • while serving a sentence of life imprisonment or a term of 99 years for an offense under Section 20.04, 22.021, or 29.03, murders another;
    • the person murders more than one person:
      • during the same criminal transaction; or
      • during different criminal transactions but the murders are committed pursuant to the same scheme or course of conduct;
    • the person murders an individual under 10 years of age;
    • the person murders an individual 10 years of age or older but younger than 15 years of age; or
    • the person murders another person in retaliation for or on account of the service or status of the other person as a judge or justice of the supreme court, the court of criminal appeals, a court of appeals, a district court, a criminal district court, a constitutional county court, a statutory county court, a justice court, or a municipal court.

Manslaughter (PC 19.04)

  • A person commits an offense if he recklessly causes the death of an individual.

Criminally Negligent Homicide (PC 19.05)

  • A person commits an offense if he causes the death of an individual by criminal negligence.

 Intoxication Manslaughter (PC 49.08)

  • A person commits an offense if the person:
    • operates a motor vehicle in a public place, operates an aircraft, a watercraft, or an amusement ride, or assembles a mobile amusement ride; and
    • is intoxicated and by reason of that intoxication causes the death of another by accident or mistake.

​If you have been arrested for any of these crimes, call our office at 888-403-0383 and speak to an attorney today! 

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