Homicide comes with hefty penalties, including a long prison sentence and a damaged reputation. While most people immediately think of murder, California has other charges for cases involving the death of another person. If death was caused by a motor vehicle, the defendant can face a vehicular manslaughter charge – which can still lead to a life sentence.
If you or someone you love has been charged with vehicular manslaughter, contact Balboa Bail Bonds. Our veteran bail bond agents are available 24/7, 365 days a year to provide fast and affordable bail bonds for clients through San Diego, Riverside, and Orange County. We have decades of experience in the industry and have strong relationships with local courts, ensuring that our clients receive consistent support throughout their case. To get bail paid today, call us at (619) 760-2222.
Vehicular manslaughter is a type of manslaughter charge that applies when a defendant is accused of killing another person with an act of recklessness or criminal negligence while operating a motor vehicle, according to California Penal Code 192 PC. To convict you for manslaughter, the prosecutor must prove that you:
- Were operating a motor vehicle;
- In a manner that was likely to cause another person’s death;
- And you committed an act of ordinary or gross negligence; and
- Your actions caused the death of another person.
However, under Penal Code 191.5 PC, vehicular manslaughter can be elevated if the defendant is also charged with a DUI. In these cases, vehicular manslaughter is similar to a DUI with injury but comes with significantly harsher penalties. As with a standard manslaughter charge, the penalties for this crime, and the bail, can be increased depending on whether the defendant committed ordinary or gross negligence.
The penalties for vehicular manslaughter depend on how the defendant acted while operating the vehicle and the legal difference between ordinary and gross negligence. Ordinary negligence applies to situations where a defendant acted in a manner that could have caused injury or death to someone else, such as by making a dangerous left turn into oncoming traffic. Gross negligence applies to situations where a defendant acted in a reckless manner, meaning his actions were unreasonable by normal standards. Driving 20 miles over the speed limit, running red lights, street racing – all of these can be considered gross negligence.
If a defendant is charged with vehicular manslaughter and ordinary negligence, he can face a misdemeanor punishment of up to one year in county jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000. Gross negligence, however, is a wobbler, meaning the defendant can face either misdemeanor or felony penalties. A felony conviction can result in up to two, four, or six years in state prison and/or a $10,000 fine.
The presence of alcohol will also play a role in how a defendant is punished. Vehicular manslaughter while under the influence can be a misdemeanor or a felony. If the defendant’s case involved gross negligence and alcohol or drugs, then he can face up to 15 years to life in prison.
Bottom line: all of these charges come with penalties that can forever change your life. In addition to facing harsh consequences, defendants also face high bail amounts before they are released pending trial.
Bail for vehicular manslaughter, or any homicide charge, will always be high. California’s bail schedule outlines strict guidelines for vehicular manslaughter, and each county has the right to increase or decrease bail based on its own schedule. For example, Riverside County sets bail for misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter at $7,500, while Orange County and San Diego County set it as high as $50,000 to $100,000 for cases involving gross negligence or DUIs.
Getting your friend or family member out of prison may seem like an insurmountable task, but it is possible with the aid of an experienced bail bond agent. At Balboa Bail Bonds, we bail out defendants in San Diego, Riverside, and Orange County in return for a 10% premium. If your loved one’s bail is set at $100,000, then you will need to pay us $10,000, but you do not have to pay us all at once. We work with each client to develop a personalized and affordable payment plan for their situation, ensuring that your loved one can get out of holding immediately.
Balboa Bail Bonds is dedicated to providing reliable support and guidance through the entire bail bond process. We understand that the criminal justice system is complex and all you want is to get your loved one back. Each of our agents has at least five years of experience in the industry and is available to answer all of your questions. If your loved one has been arrested for vehicular manslaughter, we can act fast to get them home.
To speak to an experienced bail bond agent, call Balboa Bail Bonds at (619) 760-2222 or contact us online. All of our agents are fluent in Spanish, and we offer discounts for members of the military and their families.