Concealing an accidental death under Penal Code 152 is a serious offense. This charge applies even if an individual did not cause the accidental death. Merely attempting to keep others from discovering the death is enough to result in a legal charge.
California’s court system handles individuals accused of violating PC 152 very harshly. Convictions may result in incarceration and fines.
The Definition of Concealing an Accidental Death
Most of us know that causing the death of another person is against the law in California. But what happens if someone merely discovers that an accidental death occurred? Depending upon the individual’s next actions, they could end up facing criminal charges under PC 152.
Prosecutors use PC 152 to prosecute individuals who:
- Find out about an accidental death, and
- Try to actively conceal the death
There are a number of ways to try to conceal an accidental death. This could be as simple as failing to report a death properly to the police. However, some individuals may take more direct steps. Covering a body or hiding are examples of attempting to conceal a death.
Information About Accidental Deaths in California
Not all deaths in California are accidental in nature. Individuals only face PC 152 charges if they attempt to conceal a death that was not premeditated or intentional in some way. These deaths are unexpected. There are many possible causes of accidental death, including:
- Accidents at the workplace
- Fall accidents
- Car accidents
Note that attempting to conceal a death that was not accidental may lead to different charges in California. Some individuals, for example, may attempt to conceal a death that they caused. In these cases, individuals could end up facing charges under:
- Penal Code §135: Destroying or Concealing Evidence
- Penal Code §187: Murder
- Penal Code §192: Involuntary Manslaughter
A criminal defense lawyer in Los Angeles could help you handle any of these charges. Find out more about your legal options by contacting us right now at (310) 997-4688.
Penalties for a PC 152 Conviction
The court system in California takes PC 152 charges very seriously. Individuals face harsh penalties if they are convicted of concealing an accidental death. Prosecutors treat PC 152 charges as misdemeanors. Convictions may lead to:
- Fines of up to $10,000
- Jail time of up to one year
The penalties for involuntary manslaughter or murder are generally much harsher. However, here at the Simmrin Law Group, we believe all criminal charges in California should be treated seriously. Allow us to assess your situation if you are accused of a PC 152 violation.
Defenses for Concealing an Accidental Death Charges
There are several possible defenses for PC 152 charges. Individuals accused of concealing an accidental death may handle these charges by working to show that:
They Did Not Know About the Accidental Death
You cannot legally conceal an accidental death you didn’t know about. In some cases, you could walk by a body without being aware of it. If you did not know the death occurred, you should not face a conviction under PC 152. Our team at Simmrin Law Group can help you fight this charge.
You Were Threatened into Concealing the Death
In some cases, individuals may wish to report an accidental death. However, you could receive threats to your life or well-being that keep you silent. In this case, a lawyer could work to show that you were under duress. This could help you avoid a PC 152 conviction.
Handling a PC 152 Charge in California
You have legal options available to you if you were accused of concealing an accidental death in California. A lawyer can get to work on your defense immediately, blocking evidence and working to get your charges dismissed. A lawyer can also work to reduce your charges.
We’re prepared to stand up for you in and out of the court system in California. Put your defense in our hands by reaching out to us now.
Get Help Handling Charges for Concealing an Accidental Death
Contact the Simmrin Law Group if you were charged under Penal Code 152: Concealing an Accidental Death. Let us put our legal knowledge to work for you today. It’s easy to contact us about PC 152 charges. Just call (310) 997-4688 or complete our online contact form. One of our criminal defense lawyers in Los Angeles is prepared to help you.
Find out more with a free consultation.