What is manslaughter in Florida?

Homicide lawyers Destin, Ft Walton Beach, Crestview.

The crime of Manslaughter is a Second Degree Felony that is punishable up to 15 years in prison and $10,000 fine.

The offense of Manslaughter occurs when:

  1. Victim is dead.
  2. The person intentionally committed an act that caused the death of victim, the person procured the commission of an act that caused the death of victim, or the death of victim was caused by culpable negligence of defendant.

An “act” includes a series of related actions arising from and performed pursuant to a single design or purpose.

To “procure” means to persuade, induce, prevail upon, or cause a person to do something.

If there is a violation of that duty, without any conscious intention to harm, that violation is negligence.  But culpable negligence is more than a failure to use ordinary care toward others.  In order for negligence to be culpable, it must be gross and flagrant. 

Culpable negligence is a course of conduct showing reckless disregard of human life, or of the safety of persons exposed to its dangerous effects, or such an entire want of care as to raise a presumption of a conscious indifference to consequences, or which shows wantonness or recklessness, or a grossly careless disregard for the safety and welfare of the public, or such an indifference to the rights of others as is equivalent to an intentional violation of such rights.

Some of the defenses to Manslaughter are:

  • Person was merely negligent.
  • Person did not intentionally commit the act.
  • Person did not procure the commission of the act.
  • The course of conduct did not show reckless disregard of human life.


McCreary v. State: On reckless disregard of human life.

Contact Criminal Defense Attorney Glenn M. Swiatek for a Free Initial Consultation

If you have been arrested or believe you will soon be arrested for the offense of manslaughter in Destin, Shalimar, Crestview, Ft. Walton Beach or other areas of Northwest Florida please call us today at (850) 609‑0940 or contact us online.

Initial Office Consults are free, and I will make myself available to suit your schedule. Get the peace of mind that an attorney with over twenty-three years of criminal law experience can bring.