First Degree Murder Defense – A Discussion about Criminal Law

Murder is a common and familiar term. This refers to the act of taking human life illegally and unjustifiably. When this said, it may give rise to the question – what is justified killing. There are homicides that can be justified. When someone kills another human being in the war field, the act is considered justified.

Some US states categorizes this act into several degrees, including first degree, second degree, voluntary and involuntary manslaughter. First degree murder is considered the most serious one. An act of killing needs to have several elements to be considered as first degree. A willful and premeditated act of killing is considered capital by the criminal law. The act needs to be committed after consideration which means the perpetrator needs to plan the entire act for a certain time being and then execute the act.


To file a successful lawsuit some important elements need to be present. Because this is state governed issue, some of the issues may differ. Deliberation, willfulness and premeditation are all required elements. Some of the states demand that malice aforethought also be present. Intent is an important element. The perpetrator must have the intention of carrying out the murder plan. The intention need not be focused on the person who has been killed.

This means that the murderer may intent to kill one person and end up killing another one. Yet, the result and the consequences will be the same. Deliberation and premeditation are essential factors. This does not mean the murderer should spend years contemplating and planning the act. This only means that the perpetrator gets time enough to think and act.


This is a criminal offense. First degree murder can result into lifetime imprisonment. This will be without any chance of parole. Death penalty is the last option that courts preserve for those who have committed the highest act of malice. To prevent being penalized, you need to seek legal assistance. This is not an act that you will be able to handle without help from South Carolina Criminal Lawyer experienced in providing murder defense.


There are several defense strategies for murder. The defense strategy works in two ways. The perpetrator can claim that wrong accusation has been made. This is one of the strategies. The other defense strategy is to admit the offense. However, with that the perpetrator claims there had been reasons for committing the murder.

Mistake in identifying the perpetrator is one of the defense strategies. The defense counsel needs to show that the perpetrator had been present elsewhere at the time of murder. Here alibi comes to effect. If the perpetrator can bring someone who can support the present somewhere else theory, the lawsuit will be dismissed.

Justified killing is used when the perpetrator claims that murder had been committed but there had been reason to commit the murder. Claim of self defense is common in this case. Defense due to insanity can be applicable as well. To establish this, the lawyer needs to bring experts.