About Second-Degree Murder Charges in Massachusetts

Murder Defense Lawyers Serving Plymouth County, Bristol County, Norfolk County MA

Massachusetts law defines second-degree murder as “any murder that is not first-degree murder.” Another clause of this statute is even more ambiguous, describing second-degree murder as “an unlawful killing with malice aforethought but without deliberate premeditation.”

What, exactly, constitutes the difference between “malice aforethought” and “deliberate premeditation” can mean the difference between life in prison without the possibility of parole (the mandatory sentence for first-degree murder) and a less severe term with the possibility of early release.

Besides premeditation (or the lack of it), another sufficient condition for a charge of second-degree murder is that the murder was committed “in the course of committing a felony not punishable by death or life in prison” (as opposed to first-degree murder charges that can be brought if the murder was committed in the course of a felony that is punishable by death or life in prison).

Free Consultation With an Experienced Murder Defense Trial Lawyer

As with the fine line between “malice aforethought” and “deliberate premeditation,” only an attorney experienced in Massachusetts homicide law can navigate you or your loved one expertly through a second-degree felony murder charge.

For a free initial consultation call an experienced Second-Degree Murder Criminal Defense Lawyer at (508) 584-6955 to discuss you case. We can offer you an aggressive defense, but you need to take the first step and make the call.  If you prefer, you can also use our Free Online Case Evaluation Form.

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