Unlike murder, manslaughter is the killing of another human being but without malice. Manslaughter is defined in differing categories like murder, but with manslaughter there’s only two categories: voluntary manslaughter and involuntary manslaughter.

Voluntary manslaughter is a first-degree felony, and it may be of two sorts:

  • The unjustified killing of another “under a sudden and intense passion resulting from serious provocation”; or
  • The killing of another intentionally or knowingly under circumstances where an individual believes self-defense is justified but that belief is unreasonable.

Voluntary manslaughter, like first-degree murder, is an intentional killing, but it’s an intentional killing completed without malice.

Involuntary manslaughter is something much different than voluntary manslaughter because the killing is not intentional, rather it is either—

  • A direct result of the doing of an unlawful act in a reckless or grossly negligent manner; or
  • The doing of a lawful act in a reckless or grossly negligent manner that causes the death of another.

Generally, involuntary manslaughter is a first-degree misdemeanor; however, it’s a second-degree felony “where the victim is under 12″ and was “in the care, custody or control of the person who caused [their] death.”

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