Tennessee Vehicular Homicide Lawyers

In Defense of Vehicular Homicide

Vehicular homicide (known as vehicular manslaughter in some states) is defined as death that results from the negligent operation of a motor vehicle or that results from driving while committing an unlawful act that does not amount to a felony. In general, vehicular homicide is a lesser charge than manslaughter. However, like all homicide crimes, the penalties are significant.

The experienced Knoxville homicide defense lawyers at Baker Associates understand the weight of these charges and will fight for you at every stage of the legal proceeding. If you have been charged with a homicide crime, call the experienced criminal defense attorneys at Baker Associates today for a free consultation.

Vehicular Homicide in Tennessee

Although the word "homicide" itself conjures up pictures of horror, not all homicides are committed with malicious intent. This is often the case in vehicular homicide cases. In fact, Tennessee law states that vehicular homicide is the "reckless killing of another by the operation of an automobile, airplane, boat or other motor vehicle."

To have acted with the requisite mental state of recklessness, the state must prove that the accused acted with conscious disregard to circumstances that created a substantial and unjustifiable risk of death or serious bodily injury to the alleged victim. DWI or DUI in Tennessee is often proof of such reckless intent. Death as a result of street racing or drag racing, moreover, may be proof of the type of recklessness required to convict a defendant with vehicular homicide should a death result from the reckless activity.

Most vehicular homicide, except that which involves intoxication, is a Class C felony in Tennessee. Vehicular homicide cases that involve the use of alcohol or drugs are usually classified as Class B felonies. In such cases, defendants face serious consequences from jail time and hefty fines to losing their driver's license. According to T.C.A. § 39-13-213, the court can prohibit a defendant convicted of vehicular homicide from driving a vehicle in Tennessee from three years to 10 years.


Vehicular homicide can become "aggravated" depending on the defendant's level of intoxication and prior criminal history, particularly with regard to DUI convictions. Aggravated vehicular homicide may also be charged in cases where the defendant has two or more prior convictions for driving under the influence (DUI), vehicular assault or vehicular homicide. Aggravated vehicular homicide may also be charged if the defendant at the time of the alleged offense had a blood alcohol level of .20% or more and a prior DUI conviction.

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Aggravated vehicular homicide is a serious charge and is a Class A felony in Tennessee, which means it is classified under the highest tier of felonies. A conviction could result in a lengthy prison sentence and severe monetary penalties. If you have been charged with vehicular homicide or aggravated vehicular homicide, please contact the experienced and knowledgeable Knoxville vehicular homicide defense attorneys at Baker Associates to discuss your case.

Complete the form below if you have been charged with vehicular homicide. An attorney at our office near Knoxville and Pigeon Forge will contact you soon.

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Knox County
2126 First Tennessee Plaza
800 South Gay Street
Knoxville, Tennessee 37929

Phone: (865) 521-0001
Toll-free: (866) 853-2888

Sevier County
121 Court Avenue
Sevierville, Tennessee 37862

Phone: (865) 546-6000
Toll-free: (866) 853-2888

Washington County
300 East Main Street
Johnson City, Tennessee 37601

Knoxville Tennessee Criminal Lawyer Disclaimer: The criminal defense or other legal information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice, nor the formation of a lawyer or attorney client relationship. Any results set forth here were dependent on the facts of that case and the results will differ from case to case. Please contact an attorney at our law firm. This web site is not intended to solicit clients for matters outside of the State of Tennessee.

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