When people see in the news that a homicide was committed, they often think that means that someone was murdered. While it can mean that, it doesn't always mean it. The best way to think of it is like this:
All murders are homicides, but not all homicides are murders.
You see, a homicide just means that a life was taken by another person. It means that the person who passed away did not die merely from natural causes, like having a heart attack. Someone else contributed to it.
However, the exact legal definition is not the same in all homicide cases. For instance, if it was in self-defense -- such as when someone breaks into another person's home at night, surprising that person and forcing him or her to protect the family -- it may not even end up being a crime.
In other cases that are still crimes, the charges could be far, far below murder. For example, it may be determined that the homicide was manslaughter. This generally means that the person was killed, but that there was no intent to kill. It was an accident or the result of negligence.
For example, if someone breaks the law by driving recklessly and hits a person in a crosswalk, it could be manslaughter. It's clearly not murder because there was no intent to hit that person, causing injury or death, but the fault can still be traced to the driver.
We represent all types of homicide cases, so we encourage you to check out our site if you'd like to learn more about the charges and your legal options in Colorado Springs.