June 15, 2011 By Wallin & Klarich

Murder is quite possibly the most horrendous act any human being is capable of committing. There is not a single developed society in existence that condones the senseless taking of life in a manner that is deliberate and calculated.

For this reason, a murder charge is severely prosecuted. As a capital offense, the penalty for murder can be death or life in prison without the possibility of parole.

How can a DUI lead to Murder?

In California, a drunk driver can be prosecuted as a murderer, even if the resulting death was unintended or purely accidental. This particular type of murder is called a Watson Murder.

Named after the court case that first introduced the concept, a Watson Murder is prosecuted when a person with a prior DUI conviction drives under the influence again and it results in the death of another person.

Instead of it being prosecuted as a manslaughter offense (a killing that is committed by accident), a Watson Murder will incur a second-degree murder charge.

Second-degree murder is normally punishable by imprisonment in state prison for 15 years to life. Although a harsh punishment, it does not approach the possibility of death by execution.

Needless to say, you do not want the possibility of a Watson Murder charge looming over your head. If you are facing a DUI allegation, it is important that you seek the expertise of a skilled criminal defense attorney. At Wallin & Klarich, our attorneys have been in practice for over 30 years and can help you avoid harsh prison sentences. Call us today at 888-749-0034 or visit us online at www.wklaw.com. We will be there for you when you call.

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