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Charles T. Ganz

What is vehicular manslaughter in Texas?

On Behalf of | Jul 8, 2024 | Manslaughter Defense

Most of the time, car wrecks are the result of nothing more than simple negligence – even when they lead to the tragic death of another.

However, drivers who cause fatal accidents can and do find themselves charged with vehicular manslaughter in this state. Here are some of the basics you need to know:

Common situations that lead to vehicular manslaughter charges

“Vehicular manslaughter” is not covered under a specific statute in the law, but can be charged due to several different kinds of behavior. Most commonly, vehicular manslaughter is associated with operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated and causing someone’s death. This is generally referred to as “intoxication manslaughter.”

However, drivers can be charged with vehicular manslaughter when they cause the death of another while:

  • Drag racing or otherwise engaging in contests of speed with another driver
  • Driving without a valid license or while driving on a suspended license
  • Driving recklessly, such as at an unusually high rate of speed above the posted limit
  • Driving while texting or otherwise distracted by their phone
  • Driving while making videos for TikTok or social media posts
  • Driving aggressively, such as shifting lanes abruptly and riding someone’s back bumper
  • Driving up on a sidewalk where pedestrians are located to get around a stalled car
  • Driving too fast through a construction zone and hitting a worker
  • Driving around a stopped bus and hitting a child or passenger 

It’s important to understand that you do not have to intentionally cause the other person’s death to face this charge. While you may see your actions as a simple mistake that had unexpectedly awful consequences, the prosecutor may see things differently. Exploring your defense options is wise.