Over 100 Not Guilty Verdicts At Trial | Over 2,000 Dismissals

* Statistics Verified by County Clerk of Court Documents

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Client Testimonials
  • "Don Pumphrey is a very respectable and trustworthy person" by Alejandro M.
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  • "I would trust him with my case 10/10 times, A+ lawyer!" by D. Hoffman, Past Client
  • "He took his time with my case and made sure to get me the best results." by David H., Past Client
  • "Today, my relative is no longer in the system, having to report on a weekly basis, graduated college & gone on with his carer, having avoided prison - Thanks to Don Pumphrey JR." by Donna J., Relative of Past Client
  • "Without question, the best criminal defense attorney in Tallahassee." by J.P.M., Past Client
  • "Saved my life best lawyer ever!" by Jacob S., Past Client
  • "You will not find a finer, more experienced criminal attorney in Tallahassee to handle mistakes made by yourself or your student." by Kim, Parent of Past Client
  • "I will definitely be recommending his firm to anyone I come across that needs legal counsel. Thank you Don! You put our anxiety at ease and established a relationship and referrals for a lifetime!" by Kim S., Past Client
  • "Highly recommended if you need the best representation" by L.L., Past Client
  • "His dedication to his clients and office is remarkable." by Matt D., Past Client
  • "His passion for justice is second only to his unwavering commitment to his clients." by Michael M., Past Client
  • "During our initial phone conference with Mr. Pumphrey, we could tell that our son was in good hands." by Michelle K., Parent of Past Client
  • "The best in the Southeast!" by Mike T., Past Client
  • "A highly proficient and credible lawyer, but one that actually cares about you, your financial circumstances, and looking for the best options available to you. " by Ryan P.

Vehicular Manslaughter / Homicide

When there is an allegation of reckless driving causing or contributing to the death of another person, the criminal offense can be charged as vehicular homicide. Even harsher penalties can apply if it is alleged that the driver left the scene of the accident after the incident occurred.

The State Attorney’s Office in the Second Judicial Circuit for Tallahassee and Leon County relies heavily on the wishes of the victim’s family in these cases. Obtaining qualified representation early in the case is critical because favorable evidence may not be adequately preserved by law enforcement during the traffic homicide investigation.

Tallahassee Vehicular Homicide Defense Attorney

If you or a loved one was involved in a car crash that resulted in the death or serious bodily injury of another person, contact an attorney at Pumphrey Law. Obtaining legal representation as soon after the accident occurred is important so that all favorable evidence can be preserved.

The lawyers at Pumphrey Law represent clients throughout the Florida Panhandle, including those in Tallahassee, and the surrounding areas such as Crawfordville in Wakulla County, Quincy in Gadsden County, Bristol in Liberty County and Monticello in Jefferson County. Call (850) 681-7777 to schedule a free case evaluation.

Information About Vehicular Manslaughter

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Vehicular Homicide under Florida Law

Vehicular homicide, also called vehicular manslaughter, is defined in Florida Statute §782.071 as the killing of a person or a fetus by an injury to the mother, caused by reckless driving of a motor vehicle. Reckless driving is considered driving with wanton or willful disregard for the safety of property or another person.

These cases usually involve an allegation of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol or racing on the roadway. The facts of the case may involve driving at high speed or driving the wrong way on a one-way street or highway. The prosecutor is not required to prove the driver intended to kill or injury anyone. Instead, the penalty punishes the reckless behavior of being indifferent to the consequences.

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Punishments and Penalties for Vehicular Manslaughter

Generally, vehicular manslaughter is a second-degree felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison, a fine up to $10,000 or both, according to Florida Statutes Annotated §782.071.

The crime also can be charged as a first-degree felony if it is also alleged that at the time of the crash the driver knew, or should have known that the crash occurred, and failed to stop and give information to law enforcement or render reasonable aid to those injured in the crash.

This means if a person was in an accident which killed someone and the driver left the scene, he or she could face first-degree felony charges. This crime is punishable by up to 30 years in prison and a fine up to $10,000.

In addition to any other punishment, the court may order the person to serve 120 community service hours in a trauma center or hospital that regularly receives victims of vehicle accidents, under the supervision of a registered nurse, an emergency room physician or an emergency medical technician, according to Florida law.

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Defenses to Vehicular Manslaughter Cases

If you are facing vehicular manslaughter charges, you may feel like there is no way out. The charges are serious and they can carry harsh penalties. If convicted, you could face nearly three decades in prison. However, a skilled Tallahassee criminal lawyer can help establish a defense to the charges.

If a death or serious bodily injury occurs after a car accident, law enforcement officers typically will ask for a DUI blood test. In some cases, the blood is taken by force if the driver refuses. In other cases, the blood is taken without the suspect’s knowledge if the suspect is unconscious. If you feel you may be charged with a Florida DUI Manslaughter, you need to contact an experienced attorney immediately. 

The prosecutor also may attempt to use blood results used by the hospital as part of emergency medical treatment. Cases involving the death or serious bodily injury of another person rarely involve a urine or breath test. An experienced attorney can fight to get evidence thrown out if it was not acquired legally.

For vehicular homicide cases, the accident report privilege also plays an important role because the suspect’s statements may not be admissible if the officer does not make it clear the statements are part of a “criminal investigation” and not the “accident investigation.”

Other important defenses apply, particularly a showing that the driver’s conduct was merely careless and not reckless. Often a fine line exists between an accident and a “vehicular homicide” charge. An attorney can help you fight for your future.

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Collateral Issues in a Vehicular Homicide Case

Vehicular homicide cases also can lead to civil lawsuits for negligence, personal injury and wrongful death against the suspected driver. Restitution can be ordered as part of the sentence, although the victim’s family likely will seek restitution from the driver or the driver’s insurance company in a personal injury lawsuit or a wrongful death lawsuit.

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Finding A Vehicular Homicide Defense Lawyer in Tallahassee

Vehicular homicide charges can be intimidating and complex. A Tallahassee criminal attorney at Pumphrey Law can help guide you through the legal process and work to get you the best possible results in your case. Call (850) 681-7777 to schedule a free case evaluation.

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