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Second Degree Murder Charges in AZ

A person charged under the A.R.S. 13-1104 is accused of second degree murder. In other words, the individual didn’t plan to kill someone. It just happened. According to Arizona law, second degree murder occurs in one of three ways. The individual:

  • Intentionally caused someone’s death.
  • Knew his or her actions would cause serious injury or death to someone.
  • Showed extreme indifference to life by engaging in conduct which created a risk of death. This indifference caused someone’s death.

It’s easy to confuse second degree murder with manslaughter because they are not first degree murder. However, the two charges are different. Manslaughter occurs when an individual doesn’t mean to kill someone, but does so in the heat of the moment. If you are accused of second degree murder there was no such heat of passion. It doesn’t matter if you were charged with first-, second degree or manslaughter. Our lawyers at the Massen Law Firm will defend you against any type of murder charge. Contact us for an initial consultation.

Possible Punishment for a Second Degree Murder Conviction

Second degree murder isn’t a death penalty crime. Thus, you won’t be facing death, if convicted. However, you could face:

  • Minimum of 10 years in prison.
  • 16 years presumptive years in prison.
  • Maximum of 22 years in prison.

If convicted of second degree murder, you have to complete the sentence. There is no early release or time off for any good behavior while in prison. Remember, this is only a second degree murder charge. Maasan Law Firm will help you successfully challenge the prosecutor’s evidence so you don’t have to think about possible prison sentences.

Possible Defenses to Second Degree Murder

There are many defenses available to you depending on the facts of your particular case. For instance, our lawyers may be able to plead self-defense on your behalf. When someone uses deadly force against you, you have the right to defend yourself with the same amount of force. Our lawyers will argue supervening cause, if the facts warrant it. With a supervening defense, we show that something else caused the person’s death, not you. For instance, the supervening defense could be prescription drugs was the cause, not your actions.

In addition to basing your defense on the facts of the case, we will challenge any criminal procedures not followed. For example, you may have made an incriminating statement to police that you think gives them stronger evidence. However, you were tricked or coerced into making that statement by a police officer. We will file a motion to suppress that statement because your Miranda Rights may have been violated. At any time during your police interview you requested a lawyer and was ignored, you will challenge any evidence obtained during that interview. We file a motion asserting that you were denied right to counsel.

Also, we will challenge any evidence such as DNA, fingerprints or urine testing that the prosecutor has. Maasen Law Firm understands that you’re worried that you may go to prison for something that wasn’t your fault. We are here to help you fight a second degree murder charge and/ or any criminal or driving under the influence (DUI) charge you may face. Contact us immediately for a free consultation. We want to start defending you right away.


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