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Murder is one of the most serious crimes you can be accused of. The charge alone has the potential to affect your reputation and relationships. If you're convicted, you could face decades to life in prison, putting further strains upon your life and presenting various hurdles and challenges upon your release from incarceration. Proceeding through a murder case can be stressful and painful. Adding to that is the fact that the criminal justice system is complex, and fighting to protect your rights and freedoms may be difficult for you to take on alone. You do have the right to have an attorney represent you, and exercising this right is important. With skilled legal help on your side, you can work toward a favorable outcome.
At Rogosheske, Rogosheske & Atkins, PLLC, we firmly believe in the presumption of innocence. Our St. Paul murder attorneys know that there are two sides to every story, and we're here to listen to your account of the case. Additionally, we'll thoroughly investigate, conduct interviews, review all pertinent evidence, and carry out all necessary steps to spot holes in and cast doubt on the State's allegations. Backed by over 80 years of experience, that involves handling tens of thousands of cases and hundreds of jury trials, we know what it takes to present an effective defense. We'll provide aggressive representation every step of the way.
In Minnesota, a person accused of taking another's life may be charged with first-, second-, or third-degree murder. The degree to which the person faces depends upon the facts of the case.
Minnesota First-Degree Murder
This is the most serious murder offense. It is committed when a person:
- Plans and intends to cause the death of another;
- Causes someone else's death during the commission or attempted commission of first- or second-degree criminal sexual conduct;
- Causes another's death during the commission or attempted commission of a:
- Aggravated robbery
- First- or second-degree arson
- Drive-by shooting
- First-degree tampering with a witness
- Escape from custody
- Felony drug crime
- Takes the life of a police officer, prosecutor, judge, or correctional facility guard;
- Causes the death of a minor during a child abuse offense;
- Causes the death of another during a domestic abuse offense; or
- Causes the death of another during a felony terroristic crime;
First-degree murder is punishable by life in prison.
Minnesota Second Degree Murder
A person may be accused of committing second-degree murder if they:
- Without planning but with intent, cause someone else's death; or
- Cause the death of another during a drive-by shooting
The charge may also be levied if someone causes the death of another without intent while:
- Committing or attempting to commit a felony that does not involve criminal sexual conduct
- Causing or attempting to cause bodily harm on another when the alleged actor has an order for protection issued in their name and the alleged victim is the person protected by that order
A conviction for second-degree murder is penalized by up to 40 years in prison.
Minnesota Third-degree Murder
A person may be charged with third-degree murder if they cause the death of another by engaging in dangerous behavior that evinces a depraved mind and shows disregard for the lives of others. This offense is punishable by up to 25 years in prison.
Third-degree murder may also be charged when a person, without intending to, causes someone else's death by being directly or indirectly part of a drug crime involving a Schedule I or II controlled substance. The conviction penalties include imprisonment for up to 25 years and/or a fine of up to $40,000.
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If you’ve been charged with murder, reach out to Rogosheske, Rogosheske & Atkins, PLLC immediately. Building a sound legal strategy requires thorough preparation, and our St. Paul murder attorneys will get started on your case right away.
We’ll leverage all available resources to seek a favorable outcome for you. Schedule your confidential consultation by calling our St. Paul murder lawyers at (651) 413-9004 or submitting an online contact form.