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Murder in Georgia

The most serious of violent crimes is murder.  Murder is the taking of a human life, but it has specific elements, which distinguish it from other forms of homicide.

There are several different ways to commit murder in Georgia.

Malice Murder

A person commits the offense of murder when he unlawfully and with malice aforethought, either express or implied, causes the death of another human being.

Malice is an evil intent.  

Felony Murder

A person commits the offense of murder when, in the commission of a felony, he or she causes the death of another human being, irrespective of malice.  

So, the person does not have to have the intent to cause a death but does have the intent to commit a felony.  For instance, the person commits a robbery and a person dies.  

Second Degree Murder

Murder in the second degree involves the death of a person while committing the offense of cruelty to children in the second degree. Second degree child cruelty is the negligent causing of cruel or excessive physical or mental pain.

Penalty for Murder

Under the statute, a person convicted of murder shall be punished by death, life imprisonment without parole, or by imprisonment for life.  Constitutionally, the penalty for felony murder should not include death.

Second degree murder can support a sentence of between 10 and 30 years of imprisonment.


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