In Texas, criminal homicide is covered under Title 5, Chapter 19 of the Texas Penal Code. Under Section 19.01(a) of the Penal Code, it explains that one commits criminal homicide when he or she “intentionally, knowingly, recklessly, or with criminal negligence causes the death of an individual.”
The State of Texas breaks homicide down into four offenses: 1) murder, 2) capital murder, 3) manslaughter, and 4) criminally negligent homicide. While the offense of murder is a felony of the first degree because it involves intentionally and knowingly killing someone, capital murder is the most serious of all the homicide offenses.
Capital Murder Can Be Punishable by Death
Capital murder is covered under Sec. 19.03 of the Texas Penal Code. A person commits capital murder when he or she kills someone and:
- The victim is a police officer or firemen.
- The offender commits the murder while committing or attempting to commit burglary, robbery, sexual assault, arson, retaliation, or obstruction.
- The offender commits murder for money.
- The offender hires someone else to commit murder on their behalf.
- The offender commits murder while escaping or attempting to escape a jail or prison.
- The offender kills an employee of a jail or prison while incarcerated.
- The offender commits murder while serving a life sentence.
- The offender kills someone while incarcerated for a homicide offense.
- The offender kills more than one person during a single criminal transaction.
- The offender kills a child under the age of 10.
The offense of capital murder is a capital felony, with the maximum punishment being execution by lethal injection, which consists of a single drug protocol of Pentobarbital. And how long is someone on Death Row? According to the Texas Department of Justice, on average, Texas inmates are on Death Row for 10.87 years before they are executed for a capital felony.
Are you facing capital felony charges in Plano, Dallas or Fort Worth? If so, contact The Zendeh Del Law Firm, PLLC immediately for a skilled defense.