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What happens if I accidentally kill someone with my car?

On Behalf of | Sep 17, 2021 | Criminal Defense |

Driving in bad weather conditions, or just at dark increases the likelihood of a car accident. Though, as we drive in more and more shared roads, like ones with bike lanes and near pedestrian sidewalks, the likelihood of impacting a pedestrian or bicyclist, increases. Unfortunately, as of late, we hear about these accidents increasing, which begs the: “What happens if someone accidentally kills another with their car?

Involuntary manslaughter

Depending on the facts of the case, this will likely be considered criminally negligent manslaughter or involuntary manslaughter in Indiana. This charge is specifically reserved for people that do not intend for someone to die, but were negligent enough to cause a death, like negligently operating a vehicle that causes another’s death. Of course, this could also be charged when someone is killed during the commission of another crime, if there was no intent to cause such a death or even an injury.

Indiana Code Section 35-42-1-4

The law for involuntary manslaughter, Section 35-42-1-4, is generally what controls. This law mandates that, if one is convicted, they could face anywhere from one year to six years in prison, in addition to a fine of up to $10,000. One’s driving privileges will also be revoked for a minimum of two years, but could be up to 5 years, depending on the circumstances of the car accident.

Violent crimes

For Indianapolis, Indiana, residents, it may come as a shock that a car accident could be considered a violent crime. It likely comes as an even bigger shock that a car accident could also lead one involuntary manslaughter charges. However, anytime someone is killed by another, regardless of the circumstances, the accused could, and likely will, face criminal charges.


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