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Fred Stangl Secures Plea Deal for Criminal Defendant

Fred Stangl is in the Lubbock Avalanche Journal, after prosecution accepted his client’s guilty plea to Criminally Negligent Homicide.

The charge has a recommended sentence of up to 2 years in prison and a fine of $10,000. However, as a result of Fred’s plea bargaining, his defendant received an 18-month sentence to be served at a state jail in Texas. The benefits of a plea deal to the defendant are:

– The ability to avoid a lengthy criminal trial

– Begin a sentence immediately

– The potential for a more lenient sentence

“Ultimately, my client plead guilty because he regretted his actions that night and accepted responsibility.” – Fred Stangl

There are many more details of the case in the news, view full story here.

What is Criminally Negligent Homicide?

The felony charge of Criminally Negligent Homicide is the result of an accidental death caused by a defendant. Although defendants with this charge do not have a willful or malicious intent to murder, negligence is a major component.

Proving the culpable mental state of an offender can be difficult for prosecution based on evidence. The degrees from highest to lowest are:

1. Intentional

2. Knowing

3. Reckless

4. Negligence

Criminally Negligent Homicide is sometimes compared to manslaughter where there are two types: voluntary and involuntary. Voluntary implies an intent to harm or kill, while involuntary is better described as an accidental death.

If the reckless actions of an offender directly led to a victim’s death, it is frequently indicted as manslaughter. Reckless is better defined in Texas law as a conscious disregard for substantial risks related to an offender’s conduct. Manslaughter charges are common for defendants behind the wheel, driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Negligence is defined in Texas law as an awareness that continued actions could lead to harm or death. It is commonly used to indict offenders that fail to help, act or intervene in the death of a victim. For example, an offender shoots a gun into the air which kills an innocent victim. Or an accidental discharge of a firearm causes a life-threatening injury, but the offender fails to call 911 or provide medical attention. Another unfortunate scenario for criminally negligent homicide common in Texas, is parents leaving kids in hot cars.

If you find yourself indicted for criminally negligent homicide in Lubbock or the Texas panhandle, schedule a free consultation with Fred or Chuck.

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