Aggravating Factors in Vehicular Homicide

Vehicular homicide is a serious offense that carries significant legal consequences in the state of Florida. When someone is killed as a result of reckless or negligent driving, the consequences can be severe, not only for the victim and their loved ones but also for the convicted individual. 

Once a vehicular homicide case gets to court, there are aggravating factors that can potentially elevate your charge and any associated consequences. As you work with your Tampa homicide defense lawyer with The Rickman Law Firm, it is important to be aware of any potential aggravating factors related to your case.

What Constitutes Vehicular Homicide in Florida?

In the state of Florida, according to Florida Statute 782.071, vehicular homicide occurs when a person operates a motor vehicle in a reckless manner that causes the death of another human being or unborn child.

Aggravating Factors in Vehicular Homicide Cases

Several aggravating factors can influence the severity of vehicular homicide charges and the resulting penalties. These factors can include, but are not limited to:

Prior DUIs/DWIs

Driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while intoxicated (DWI) is a significant aggravating factor in vehicular homicide cases. If the driver responsible for the accident was under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of the accident, it can potentially lead to enhanced charges and harsher penalties. 

Excessive Speeding

Excessive speeding significantly increases the risk of accidents and can contribute to the severity of associated injuries or fatalities. If it can be proven that the driver was excessively speeding at the time of the accident, it may be considered an aggravating factor during the prosecution of vehicular homicide cases.

Reckless Driving

Reckless driving is defined as any individual operating a vehicle with a willful or wanton disregard for the safety of others. Behaviors such as running red lights, weaving in and out of traffic, and any other dangerous maneuvers can be considered reckless driving. 

Prior Traffic Offenses

Previous traffic violations or convictions on the driver’s record can also be considered aggravating factors. A history of reckless driving, DUI convictions, or other traffic infractions may be used to establish a pattern of dangerous behavior during court proceedings. 

Criminal History

Any criminal history, particularly any prior convictions for offenses involving violence or reckless behavior, may influence the court’s decision regarding the severity of vehicular homicide charges and any consequential penalties. Inform your Tampa homicide defense attorney with The Rickman Law Firm if you have any criminal history.

Get Expert Legal Representation for Your Vehicular Homicide With The Rickman Law Firm

An individual convicted of vehicular homicide will face life-altering consequences. Working with a skilled homicide defense lawyer in Tampa with The Rickman Law Firm can help you achieve the most favorable outcome for your case. We will fight tirelessly for you. 

If you are facing a vehicular homicide charge, do not wait to contact our office at (813) 370-1185 or fill out the consultation form on our website. Our Tampa homicide defense attorneys are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Get the legal representation you deserve with The Rickman Law Firm.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.


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