senate Bill S943
(R, C, IP) 5th Senate District
- In Committee
- On Floor Calendar
- Passed Senate
- Passed Assembly
- Delivered to Governor
- Signed/Vetoed by Governor
Increases the penalty for the crime of criminally negligent homicide by changing such offense to a class D felony from a class E felony.
TITLE OF BILL:
to amend the penal law, in relation to criminally negligent homicide
This bill would make criminally negligent homicide a class D
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Section 125.10 of the penal law is amended to
increase the crime of criminally negligent homicide from a class E
felony offense to a class D felony offense.
Judges have expressed the view, during sentencing and
after, that the sentence which could be imposed under the limits of
the criminally negligent homicide statute, often do not fit the
seriousness of the crime committed.
First degree manslaughter is a class B felony and second degree
manslaughter is a class C felony. Logically, the next successive or
immediate lesser offense of criminally negligent homicide should be a
class D felony. However, under current State penal law, criminally
negligent homicide is actually a class E felony.
Unfortunately, the discrepancy in the classification of these crimes
was all too recently illustrated in the tragic death of a police
officer, who died in May of 1996 as a result of injuries sustained
while responding to a domestic dispute.
During the course of a struggle, the officer fell and was cut by a
piece of glass from a mirror which the defendant had allegedly thrown
at his wife. The officer subsequently died as result of a severed
The Grand Jury indicted the defendant on charges of criminally
negligent homicide, assault in the second degree, attempted assault
in the second degree, reckless endangerment and resisting arrest. In
this case the statutory discrepancy subjected the defendant to
harsher treatment for injuring the officer (assault in the second
degree, a maximum of seven years in prison) than for causing the
death of the officer (criminally negligent homicide, a maximum
sentence of four years in prison).
Obviously, this case and others like it are a complete travesty.
Accordingly, this bill will amend current law to make the crime of
criminally negligent homicide more compatible with the seriousness of
the offense committed.
Passed Senate: 1995-2008
Senate Codes Committee: 2009-10
This act shall take effect on the first day of January
next succeeding the date on which it shall have become law.
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