Attempted Murder with a Hatchet

attempted murder with a hatchet in Elizabethtown KentuckyAdmittedly, Kentucky has seen its fair share of odd crimes over the years.  There are days as a Louisville criminal defense attorney it seems as if the crew is using the Commonwealth to film multiple episodes of the TV series Cops.  Some of the situations are humorous, some depressing and others downright tragic.  I’ll let you pick which category should be applied to a recent Elizabethtown man who is charged with attempted murder with a hatchet.

On its face, the fact that the defendant used a hatchet is somewhat humorous.  However, when you realize the two counts of attempted murder involved his wife and child, you may decide to put this one in the tragic category.

The attack allegedly began during an argument between the two spouses.  The man has reportedly violated the Emergency Protective Order (EPO) taken out by his wife 3 times in the past few months.

What Is Attempted Murder?

This charge must be based on an actual intent to kill another person.  As with the charge of murder, to qualify, the element of intent must be present.  This is a key difference between murder and manslaughter.

The prosecutors must show that the defendant took direct action in the commission of the crime.  This means that if he/she developed a plan to commit murder, but never followed through, the direct action is missing.  For this reason, simply planning the murder does not meet the standard for the crime.

The charge can be made as First Degree Attempted Murder (requires intent), or as Second Degree Attempted Murder (done without premeditation).

Normally, for the charge to apply, there is a weapon involved, such as a gun or knife.  In the case of the Elizabethtown man charged with attempted murder with a hatchet, a weapon was definitely present in the commission of the crime.

If you or a family member is charged with attempted murder, you’ll need a Kentucky criminal defense lawyer with significant trial experience.  Call me for a free case evaluation and consultation.