Aggravated Murder & Murder

THERE ARE NO HIGHER CRIMINAL OFFENSES THAN AGRAVATED MURDER and MURDER. The only possible exception is the criminal charge of treason where the case is tried in a federal court.

If you have been charged with AGGRAVATED MURDER or MURDER or believe that you will be charged with this offense in the immediate future, getting answers about your case is absolutely critical. The best way for a person with a pending case, where someone has died, to get all the information and answers they need is to contact the office of an EXPERIENCED TRIAL ATTORNEY. Attorney Gaba has successfully taken cases where one or more victims have died. She has experience. She has stood in front of a jury and argued cases of this type.


Section 2929 of the Ohio Revised Code (O.R.C.) sets out the penalties; from Aggravated Murder down to Assault. The range of penalties runs from the death penalty, life without parole, life with the possibility of parole down to lesser penalties for Assault which is classified as a first degree misdemeanor, incarceration up to six months plus money fines.

The chart that sets out the exact penalties are complex. Make an appointment with Attorney Gaba and she will sit down with you and give you an exact answer.

The prevailing statutory definition of MURDER is:

Intentional behavior which is purposeful, planned with prior calculation and design, thus being premeditated, in causing the death of another person, or the unlawful termination of another’s pregnancy.

This definition is taken from the Ohio Revised Code, Book 29 (Title 29), Chapter 2903, subsection 01.

However, not all criminal cases where a victim has died can be classified as aggravated murder or murder. There are smaller charges in some types of cases where a person has died, less than murder.

Here is a list of other charges that an accused person may have brought against them (other than Aggravated Murder and Murder) in a circumstance where a victim has died:

A. Voluntary Manslaughter

B. Involuntary Manslaughter

C. Reckless Homicide

D. Negligent Homicide

E. Aggravated Vehicular homicide

F. Aggravated Vehicular Assault

2903.03 F 1

2903.04 F 1, F 3

2903.04.1 F 3

2903.05 M 1

2903.06 M2, M1, F4, F3, F2, F1

2903.08 M1, F4, F3, F2

Just as Aggravated Murder and Murder have their own strict definition, each of the above listed crimes (A through F above) has its own specific definition. In order for a person who has been accused after the death of a person, to know if he has been charged correctly, it is necessary for the EXACT FACTS to be analyzed and discussed with an attorney who has experience in representing defendants in these types of cases.


It is fair and accurate to say that there exists as many valid criminal defenses to the charge of murder, (or other crimes listed above) as there are definition and categories of criminal deaths. Each O.R.C. 2903 definition is made up of individual parts, (called elements). The elements have over the years acquired their own particular meaning and definition. Each major part of a definition of a murder charge is as important as every other part. No criminal element piece or part can be overlooked. Like the largest and most complex jig-saw-puzzle, all pieces, even the smallest pieces must be present for the full picture to emerge. Each criminal element must be present for a conviction to be valid. Stated another way: If any element to a crime is not present - there can be no valid conviction.

A prosecutor in a murder case must mandatory establish his case to the level called “beyond a reasonable doubt”. If the prosecutor does not meet this legal burden he has lost his case and the accused person has won.

Where the definition of a criminal offense used the word, “knowingly” or “negligently” or “recklessly” the prosecutor must also establish these states of mind beyond a reasonable doubt. The prosecutor can not “work backwards” to meet a definitional standard: Because there was the death of a person, the prosecutor CAN NOT therefore presume recklessness or negligence must have existed on that occasion.

The defense attorney and the client must work together as a team. The teamwork starts when the accused person contacts trial attorney Elizabeth Gaba to set up an appointment.