Sam Stein QC
“Get a top homicide barrister on your side from day 1”
Where the actions of a person lead to the death of another, the person that caused the death may be accused and tried of one form of homicide. Homicide, in the eyes of the law, can refer to either murder, which requires that intent be proven by the prosecution, or manslaughter, of which there are two primary types. The differences in sentence mean that it is essential that you are tried appropriately, and that you have a skilled and dedicated legal team working on your case from as early in the process as possible.
In order for a person to be tried of murder, the prosecution must show that they set out with the intent of killing or causing serious bodily harm to the victim. They must obviously also show that the person was killed, although this no longer necessarily requires that a body be found, and they must show that no partial defence such as diminished responsibility or provocation exists.
Partial defences exist that may lead to a conviction of voluntary manslaughter, rather than one of murder. Diminished responsibility means that the accused was not of sound mind when they committed the act, while the partial defence of provocation means that the defendant is able to prove that they were provoked and suffered a temporary loss of control, which led to the attack and subsequent death of the victim. Another partial defence exists for those that were part of a suicide pact.
The lesser crime of involuntary manslaughter can be brought against a person if they killed somebody, but did not intend to kill them. For example, gross negligence may mean that a person’s inaction led to the death of another person. While that death is still considered the accused’s fault, it is accepted that they did not intentionally or knowingly cause the death.
The difference in sentences handed out for these offences can be considerable, and this means that it is absolutely essential that you have a skilled and experienced legal team working on your case. Although it is better to have a lawyer prepped during your police interview, it isn’t too late even if your case has been heard and the verdict delivered.
R -v- Mulcahy – The longest ever single defendant murder trial in English legal history. The result of three separate police investigations with the original investigation being the largest police manhunt since the Yorkshire Ripper.
R -v- Grant & Others – Multi-handed conspiracy to murder –acquitted.
R-v- S Operation Zambezi – First on indictment, multi-handed attempted murder, money laundering, firearms, cocaine and cannabis conspiracy with voluminous Queen’s Evidence – 107 page statement following 80+ interviews of QE Witness. Legal submissions resulting both in the exclusion of background violence and in the finding of an implicit waiver of privilege over solicitor’s material on the part of the QE Witness. This matter is the subject of an ongoing appeal.
R v B – Represented first defendant alleged to have murdered a stall holder in a market as part of a ‘joint enterprise’ revenge attack. Successfully argued that the Defendant should be entitled to rely upon the fact that he suffered from a severe type of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder [ADHD] called hyperkinetic disorder when presenting his defence of self defence as well as in support of the alternative defence of diminished responsibility.
R –v- P – Manslaughter and robbery allegation involving youths and a ‘joint enterprise’ attack on another youth who when being chased and then died under the wheels of a bus.
R –v- S.H. – Attempted murder of another youth, Sam advised that psychiatric and psychological evidence be obtained relating to the victims memory of the incident and the effect of the trauma and treatment leading to memory loss and possible confabulation. Defendant successfully acquitted.
R -v- B – The manslaughter by ‘stoning a man to death’ of a man in his 60′s playing cricket with his son by a gang of 10-13 year old boys. This was the centre of huge public and media interest before and during the trial. Argued that the fatal cardiac arrhythmia was not necessarily connected to throwing of stones by the boys as his fatal symptoms have been initiated at the start of the arguments between the parties. Conviction successfully overturned on Appeal.
R v H – joint enterprise manslaughter allegation suggesting that a group of youths intimidated another and then chased him onto the tracks of the Docklands Light Railway where he was instantly killed by a train
R v Brown – ‘Jekyll and Hyde’ murder of ex-girlfriend, six pathologists were instructed on behalf of the Crown requiring detailed cross-examination on the possible signs left in the internal structure of the brain from an alleged smothering of the deceased.
R v Cowdry – Plea to murder successfully secured minimum term for a robbery and deliberate strangulation of elderly householder.
R –v- James – Murder, argued on behalf of the defendant that his mother’s long-term sexual abuse of him since he was a child was a ‘trigger’ for new defence of ‘loss of control’.
R –v- Khaleel – Murder, bad character evidence challenged before the jury and the court was persuaded to call a crucial witness from the first trial (manslaughter conviction in similar circumstances), which formed the basis of the bad character application.
R -v- Roberts & Others – Blue Lagoon Murder – Widely reported murder involving 6 defendants and the ritual torture of a vulnerable adult, ultimately leading to his death. His dismembered body was discovered in a lake.
R v P – successful defence of a drug addict alleged to have murdered another in an argument about a drug deal.
R -v- Hong – Murder allegation; Diabetic hyperglaecamic defence raised to explain the defendant’s memory loss at the time of the stabbing.
R -v- Turauskaite – Murder allegation involving lengthy cross examination of ‘best friend’ to show that he was responsible for the death.
R -v- Gayle & Others – ‘Joint enterprise’ alleged gangland Murder – Central Criminal Court –acquitted.
R -v- Ramanlal – Murder allegation; argued diminished responsibility defence.
R v K – successful defence of two sisters alleged to have killed their grandmother for her funeral money.
© 2014 Sam Stein QC