Second Degree Murder: A Brief Overview

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Second Degree Murder

Second degree murders are one of the most commonly happening murder cases among other kind of murders. In Canada, the 2nd-degree murder can happen due to different reason but you need to consider knowing about it.

So, if you ever face any legal case related to it without doing, you can fight for the justice as a sensible citizen.

Let’s continue discussing about 2nd degree murder case more deeply with the proper explanation from our experienced murder lawyers.

Murder has always been a significant influence on almost every thriller movie we watch. We can easily guess what this happens! Throughout the last decade, the number of crimes has been on the rise. Murders have been rated the hideous criminal acts all over the world.

Canada is not very far, and the country has experienced people being murdered for money, power, and other unnecessary reasons. Mostly the rate of second-degree murder has increased, which is a very alarming situation for Canada.

Therefore, it is essential to look into the topic more deeply now. Here we focus on understanding different types of murders in Canada and how 2nd-degree murders are unique to others.

What Is Second Degree Murder: An Overview of Canada

In Canada, second-degree murders can be intentional. However, the intent is purely to cause bodily harm and not kill the other person. As a result, states that differentiate between the 02 types of murders adjudge second-degree murderer to lower and fewer sentences.

Killing Intentionally But With No Premeditation

These types of killings do not include any pre-planning whatsoever. However, just when the killer kills the other person, there is the intention to kill and only kill that person.

To exemplify, let us assume that a person casually goes to another person’s house to solve a disagreement. In the heat of the moment, the person grabs a lying gun and pulls the trigger that kills the house owner.

Read More About: What is 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Degree Murders?

Now, the person did not have any plan to go to the owner’s house and kill the owner. Instead of that person only intended to solve a dispute. However, since the person was utterly aware that the trigger was pulled, lawyers can prove this as second-degree murder.

On the other hand, if the same person has been provoked to kill the owner, it is considered voluntary manslaughter.

The intention was to cause physical harm only

Another scenario that can be ruled as 2nd-degree murder is when the intention was only to cause bodily harm. In the previous example, if the murderer bangs the homeowner’s head with a shovel and kills the owner, which is considered second-degree murder. While the killer never had the intention to kill the other person, he or she was in a complete realization that hitting that hard on the head may end up killing the person.

Felony murder

While some states may consider felony murder as a second degree, many do not fall into this category. For instance, if both the person in the example went to rob a shop and the owner ends up killing the shopkeeper, you may end up being charged for second-degree murder. That is because you were present at the felony (robbing the shop) and the killing.

Although all the murders are different, the difference between first and second degree murders in Canada is also different. From the circumstances to the punishment, you will find differences all the way of the case, if you ever face.

Second Degree Murders Examples

The definition of second-degree murder still includes the intentional killing of a person, but it lacks the first-degree murderer’s level of planning and preparation. An illustration would be a murder that takes place during a dispute.

Penalties for the Second Degree Murder in Canada

The punishment for this type of murder is the sentence of imprisonment. It varies state to state and the extent of the murder.

In almost every case, the judge will decide on a minimum of 10 years of imprisonment. That can go up to 25 years of imprisonment in the Canadian Justice System. However, second-degree murderers are eligible for parole after 10 years. There have been many cases where a killer was out of prison after 10 years of serving and remained on parole for the next few years.

Moreover, if the killer was charged with murder cases previously, jail time may go up to 25 years. In such cases, the killer may not get any parole before 20 years of imprisonment.

If you want to understand how to get a pardon in Canada fast, you check it here.

Proving Second Degree Murder in the Canadian Court System

The simplest way to prove second-degree murder in court is through the assistance of a lawyer. The lawyer must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the killing was done under the category of 2nd degree.

On the other hand, the district lawyer will prove that the killer had a clear intention and previous planning to kill the person.

A lawyer can defend his or her client by proving that the district lawyer has mistakenly identified a murderer or the killing was done in self-defense. The lawyer can also confirm that the evidence shown by the district lawyer is insufficient.

Classification of Murder in Canada

Murders across the planet have been a vital issue in keeping world peace. Many organizations have been working to reduce the rate. In Canada, we can see numerous types of murder scenarios. However, there are 02 significant types of murder in Canada.

First-degree murder

Simply put, first-degree murder is when someone kills another person deliberately or intentionally. The intention is a crucial factor or word here. The murderer usually has a motive to kill the person. It is either by the contract of money or any form of harassment.

Moreover, the killing of any peace officer or police officer is always first-degree murder. It does not matter whether there was the intention or not. The same theory applies to hijacking, sexual assault, and kidnapping as well. If a person dies from these criminal acts, the murder will be considered 1st degree regardless of the intent.

Furthermore, any organizational criminal act is also this kind of murders. That involves terrorism activities as well. It does not matter whether the act was deliberate or planned. A person violating the parliamentary rules and getting involved in the terrorist killing is a 1st-degree murderer.

Second-degree murder

Any other type of murders is considered second-degree murder. One of the critical issues here is intent. If the person committing the crime did never intend to kill the person, it is a 2nd-degree murder.

In a 2nd degree murder, the murderer usually has the motive to hurt the person out of some personal fight or quarrel. As a result, if the person dies, it is entirely accidental. However, proving such is a challenging task.

There is another kind of murder which is not recognized in Canada, but typically it is known as third degree murders.


While murder rates may increase, it is essential to fear the law and order of a country. If someone is charged with second-degree murder, they can be sentenced to fewer years of punishment. Nevertheless, the hideous act of killing another human being will always be on the person’s head no matter what happens! We hope now you understand second degree murders completely. If you have any additional queries please get in touch with our lawyers.