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Could a Facebook “Poke” Result in Being Charged with Manslaughter?

Posted by Unknown | Oct 15, 2014 | 0 Comments

One night of bad decisions can result in prison time. This is seen time and again throughout Denver, Arapahoe, and Boulder County. As capable criminal defense lawyers, we have defended many good people who committed a crime after a night of drinking and have been charged with a crime. I recently read an article in the news which illustrates how often an evening of fun can go downhill. A man recently was sentenced to prison for killing his friend during an argument. In Colorado, he would most likely be charged with Manslaughter. Let's take a look at this situation and the crime.

Charged with Manslaughter?

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Disagreements Can Lead to Criminal Charges

According to the news report, two friends were out drinking one night. Everything was fine until the cab ride, when one of the men discovered his girlfriend had received a Facebook “poke” from the other man. Now, in case you don't know, a Facebook poke isn't anything serious. At most, it can be seen as casual flirting. But, the jealous boyfriend grew angry at this social interaction and began arguing during the taxi ride. The fight escalated, and the man punched his friend in the nose, causing it to bleed. He hit him again, but this time, his friend fell to the floor and hit his head. Unfortunately, this blow was fatal, and the man passed away. Now, we don't know why the Facebook poke caused the man to grow jealous and lash out at his friend; maybe he and his girlfriend were having a rough time, and the subject was touchy. Or, maybe he simply had a bit too much to drink and overreacted. Either way, this story illustrates perfectly how a disagreement between friends can end in tragedy and criminal charges.

Charged with Manslaughter: Details of the Offense

If this altercation had taken place in Adams, El Paso, or Douglas County, the man most likely would be charged with Manslaughter. Manslaughter – C.R.S. 18-3-104, is charged whenever a person:

“Recklessly causes the death of another person.”

Manslaughter is less serious than both First and Second Degree Murder, because the death is caused by reckless behavior, as opposed to knowingly causing the death of another person. Manslaughter is a class 4 felony in Colorado, which means it carries a sentence of up 6 years in the Colorado Department of Corrections.

Charged with Manslaughter? Here's Why You Need a Lawyer

We all make mistakes, which is why it's important to work with an expert lawyer if you've been charged with Manslaughter. An experienced attorney will highlight your intent and illustrate to the DA or jury that you didn't intend to harm anyone. It is vital that you fight the charges against you if you've been charged with Manslaughter. A conviction could result in prison time, and difficulty finding a job or a place to live once you've gotten out of prison. Don't stand alone in a courtroom. Work with a skilled attorney who will fight on your behalf to get the best possible outcome in court.

Get Help Now

If you or a loved one has been charged with Manslaughter, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the O'Malley Law Office for a free consultation at 303-830-0880. If you or a friend needs a jail visit from an attorney, we can do that. Together, we will protect your future.Request a Free Consultation

Image courtesy of Theeradech Sanin and digitalart at

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If you or a loved one is facing criminal charges in the Denver area, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact the top criminal defense lawyers at Sawyer Legal Group, LLC at 303-830-0880. Together, we can protect your future. Request a Free Consultation