Types of Homicides


Typesof Homicides

Homiciderefers to the act killing a human life by another human being. Itinvolves deliberately or indeliberately taking an action meant tobring to an end the life of the individual. Homicide can be in any ofthe three forms namely murder, manslaughter and justifiable homicide.

Thefirst form of homicide takes the form of murder. It refers todeliberate and preplanned cases of killing a person by an individual(Brookman, 2005). The act is viewed as inhumane and worth a seriouspunishment. Murder may take two forms namely, first degree murder andsecond degree murder. First degree murder that is the most inhumaneform of homicide refers to the deliberate and preplanned killing of aperson. All indicators show that the death was meant to occur asfacilitated by the killer. The preplanned actions act as the corpusdelicti is punishable mostly by death penalty. Second degree murderrefers to have the scenario where the murder had not preplanned tokill but performs actions meant to kill (Morrall, 2006). The actionthat was taken in killing acts as the foundation to the proof of thecrime. It is mostly punishable by life imprisonment.

Thesecond form of homicide is manslaughter (Brookman, 2005). It refersto the scenario whereby the killer had neither planned to kill nortaken actions meant to kill. The death occurs accidentally throughthe actions of the accused person of killing. The situation throughwhich the death occurred, acts as the foundation for the prosecutionand the subsequent sentencing of the culprit. The judgment passed onthis crime depends on the specific conditions on the occurrence.

Thethird form of homicide is the justifiable homicide. It occurs when aperson is killed by the other while on self defense (Morrall, 2006).This may be to avoid being killed themselves. Under the law no crimeis committed in this case. Moreover, the relevant authorities justrecord the death and under the circumstances it occurred. Howeverserious questions have been raised as to whether it is right for anindividual to kill.

Affirmativeact is an act which indicates that, there is no any criminalliability as a result of an omission to act in a criminal liability (Scheb,2011).In this regard, there must be a legal duty to act for one to beguilty of crime resulting from a particular failure. Affirmative actcan arise if there exists a relationship between the victim and theactor such as husband-wife or parent-child, in case of a statutoryduty or if there was a contract between the victim and the actor(Scheb,2011). The affirmative action is significantly applicable in all the threeforms of homicides.


Brookman,F. (2005).&nbspUnderstandinghomicide.London: SAGE Publications.

Morrall,P. (2006).&nbspMurderand Society.Chichester: John Wiley &amp Sons.

Scheb,J. (2011). CriminalLaw.Cengage Learning. Available at