New York Penal Law § 125.11: Aggravated criminally negligent homicide

While the crime of homicide often involves intentionally causing the death of another person, it can also involve causing the death of another person through negligence. Whether the killing is intentional or not, if the victim is a police officer or a peace officer, the crime is considered to be more serious. The crime of aggravated criminally negligent homicide involves causing a police officer's or peace officer's death by acting in a manner that was reckless, inattentive, or careless. Under New York Penal Law § 125.11 you could be prosecuted for aggravated criminally negligent homicide if with criminal negligence you kill a police officer or a peace officer who was performing his or her official duties. According to New York Penal Law § 15.05(4), acting with "criminal negligence" means that you failed to perceive a substantial risk that your actions or inaction would result in another person's death. The risk must constitute a gross deviation from the standard of care that a reasonable person would observe under the circumstances.

Example

Greg was driving his car and at the same time he was texting. Because he was not completely focused on the road, he drove erratically. A number of cars had to swerve in order to avoid colliding with Greg. Greg ended up running off the road onto a sidewalk where he hit and killed a man. The man was an off duty police officer. While Greg's actions arguably amounted to criminal negligence, Greg could not be prosecuted for aggravated criminally negligent homicide because the police officer that he struck and killed was not in the process of performing his official duties.

Related Offenses
  1. Criminally negligent homicide: New York Penal Law § 125.10
  2. Manslaughter in the first degree: New York Penal Law § 125.20
Defenses

If you are charged with aggravated criminally negligent homicide, a valid defense would be to show that your actions did not constitute a gross deviation from how a reasonable person would act under similar circumstances. In addition, if you can show that you did not know that the victim was a police officer or a peace officer, then a charge of aggravated criminally negligent homicide would not be appropriate. Similarly, if the victim was a police officer, but the officer was not in the course of performing his or her official duties, you did not commit aggravated criminally negligent homicide.

Sentence

Because aggravated criminally negligent homicide is a class C felony, if you are convicted you could be sentenced to up to 15 years in state prison and be ordered to pay a substantial fine.

New York Penal Law § 125.11: Aggravated criminally negligent homicide

A person is guilty of aggravated criminally negligent homicide when, with criminal negligence, he or she causes the death of a police officer or peace officer where such officer was in the course of performing his or her official duties and the defendant knew or reasonably should have known that such victim was a police officer or peace officer.

Contact the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates

Being accused of killing a police officer or a peace officer is serious. The prosecutor will aggressively seek to convict you. If convicted you could end up in prison for over a decade. If you are accused of aggravated criminally negligent homicide you should immediately contact an experienced attorney. The staff at the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates has years of experience successfully defending clients in New York criminal courts who have been charged with vehicular manslaughter, manslaughter, conspiracy, murder and other serious crimes. Contact us at 1-800-NY-NY-LAW (1-800-696-9529) to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We serve those accused of crimes in the following locations: the Bronx, Brooklyn, Long Island, Manhattan, Nassau County, Queens, Staten Island, Suffolk County and Westchester County.

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