Definition - What does Manslaughter mean?

Manslaughter is one of the many technical definitions of the act of one person killing another. Generally, manslaughter is considered to be a lesser crime than that of murder. In most jurisdictions, the level of intent is what separates manslaughter from other forms of murder.

Those charged with manslaughter are generally found to have killed someone out of negligence or on impulse, rather than committing a premeditated crime. However, this is not to imply that manslaughter is not a serious offense with a weighty punishment.

Justipedia explains Manslaughter

Most jurisdictions in the United States have two categories of the manslaughter classification: voluntary manslaughter and involuntary manslaughter (although these two types can have different names depending on the jurisdiction).

Voluntary manslaughter is often described as the killing of another person during the heat of the moment. This lack of premeditation is what distinguishes voluntary manslaughter from murder. Involuntary manslaughter usually occurs when one person kills another person unintentionally. An example of involuntary manslaughter would be when a drunk driver causes an accident that kills another individual.

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