What is manslaughter by vehicle or vessel under MD law?

What is manslaughter by vehicle or vessel under MD law?

Maryland law punishes the unintentional killing of an individual by use of car, motorcycle or boat


Maryland law punishes the unintentional killing of an individual by use of car, motorcycle or boat in specific ways:

If a death results from the

Driving

Operating, or controlling

a vehicle or vessel in a grossly negligent manner, the offender is

guilty of manslaughter by vehicle or vessel and subject to a 10 year prison sentence

 or a fine not exceeding $ 5,000 or both. Gross negligence is not defined in the statutory provision.

If a death results from the

Driving

Operating or controlling

a vehicle or vessel a criminally negligent manner, that offender is

guilty of manslaughter by vehicle or vessel and subject to a prison sentence of 3 years

or a fine not exceeding $ 5,000 or both. Obviously, due to the lesser punishment, an act of criminal negligence is considered a less culpable than an act of gross negligence.  Experienced Maryland criminal defense attorneys know a showing of more than just mere “garden variety” negligence required to sustain a conviction under either of these sections. Maryland law provides that one is criminally negligent where that “ person should be aware, but fails to perceive, that the person's conduct creates a substantial and unjustifiable risk that such a result will occur; and their failure amounts to “a gross deviation from the standard of care that would be exercised by a reasonable person.” Source Md. CRIMINAL LAW Code Ann. Section 2-210.

For convictions under either section, there are subsequent offender penalties as well, that operate to enhance the maximum sentences allowable for repeat offenders.