Fatal Shooting in Henderson, Kentucky
Not every gun-related death will result in murder or manslaughter charges. A recent fatal shooting in Henderson, Kentucky (near Evansville) resulted in a teenager being arrested on multiple, assault charges. One person died. A second remains in critical condition. The third person injured was just released from a local hospital.
According to new stories, there was a party attended by over 100 people. An altercation started (although this wasn’t actually at the party), which resulted in the shootings. The case is currently under investigation. I’m sure there’s a Kentucky criminal defense attorney who’s getting ready to take on a very serious case.
What is Assault in the 1st Degree?
Under Kentucky law, this charge applies when a person uses a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument to intentionally cause serious physical injury to another person. It’s a Class B Felony and can result in a prison sentence of 10-20 years.
What is Assault in the 2nd Degree?
Again, under Kentucky law, this charge applies when someone intentionally and seriously injures someone, or injures the person with a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument, or wantonly and seriously injures the victim with a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument. This is a Class C Felony and can result in a prison sentence of 5-10 years.
The difference enables prosecutors to apply similar standards, but with different penalties. Both are felonies and require prison time.
The interesting point here is that the defendant was charged with 1st and 2nd degree assault, but again, not murder or manslaughter. Even though this was a fatal shooting in Henderson, Kentucky, maybe the police can’t prove the defendant went to the party with the intention of committing the crime. It’s also possible that they haven’t been able to prove the defendant was the shooter who caused the death of the victim.
This is still a developing case. It’s possible additional charges may be issued. There’s certainly a possibility that the 2nd victim, who remains in critical condition, could succumb to his/her gunshot wounds. If this happens, it’s quite possible that the charges could be amended to include murder or manslaughter.