New Hampshire First-Degree Murder

A homicide occurs any time one human takes another human's life. In New Hampshire there are five types of criminal homicide: capital murder, first-degree murder, second-degree murder, manslaughter, and negligent manslaughter. The most serious forms of criminal homicide, capital murder and first-degree murder, both involve killings that occur with premeditation. This article provides a brief outline of New Hampshire's capital murder and first-degree murder laws.

Capital Murder

Code Section

New Hampshire Revised Statutes section 630:1: Capital Murder

What's Prohibited?

Knowingly causing the death of:
  • A law enforcement officer or a judicial officer acting in the line of duty, or when the death is caused as a consequence of or in retaliation for such person's actions in the line of duty
  • Another before, after, while engaged in the commission of, or while attempting to commit kidnapping
  • Another by criminally soliciting a person to cause said death or after having been criminally solicited by another for his personal pecuniary gain
  • Another after being sentenced to life imprisonment without parole
  • Another before, after, while engaging in the commission of, or while attempting to commit aggravated felonious sexual assault
  • Another before, after, while engaging in the commission of, or while attempting to commit an offense punishable under the Controlled Drug Act section 318-B:26, I(a) or (b), or
  • Another before, after, while engaging in the commission of, or while attempting to commit burglary

Penalties

Capital murder may be punishable by death.
Defenders Who Are Minors

No person who was under the age of 18 at the time of the killing can be convicted of capital murder.

First-Degree Murder

Code Section

New Hampshire Revised Statutes section 630:1-a: First-Degree Murder

What's Prohibited?

Purposely causing the death or another, or knowingly causing the death of:
  • Another before, after, while engaging in the commission of, or while attempting to commit felonious sexual assault
  • Another before, after, while engaging in the commission of, or while attempting to commit robbery or burglary while armed with a deadly weapon (the death being caused by the use of such weapon)
  • Another while committing or attempting to commit arson, or
  • The president or vice-president of the United States, the governor of any state, any member of Congress, or any candidate for such office after having been nominated by his party, when the killing is motivated by knowledge of the foregoing capacity of the victim

Penalties

First-degree murder is punished by life imprisonment without the possibility of parole.

Additional Resources

State laws change frequently. For case specific information regarding New Hampshire's capital murder and first-degree murder laws contact a local criminal defense lawyer.

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