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Bruce R. Bryan

NY Homicide Appeals

The types of NY homicide are set forth in Article 125 of the New York Penal Law. Whether a NY homicide is considered murder, manslaughter, vehicular manslaughter, or criminally negligent homicide depends on the circumstances of the incident and the mental state of the defendant.

NY Homicide Appeals: Murder

A person commits the NY crime of Murder in the Second Degree when, “with intent to cause a death of another, he causes the death of such person or of a third person.” It is an affirmative defense that the person acts under the influence of an extreme emotional disturbance. A person may also commit the NY crime of Murder in the Second Degree when, “under circumstances evincing a depraved indifference to human life, he recklessly engages in conduct which creates a grave risk of death to another person, and thereby causes the death of another person.”

NY Homicide Appeals: Manslaughter

NY manslaughter is less serious than murder in that the defendant may possess a lesser mental state or have engaged in less serious conduct that results in death. For example, a person commits the NY crime of Manslaughter in the First Degree when, “with intent to cause serious physical injury to another person, he causes the death of such person or of a third person.” There are aggravated forms of the NY crime of manslaughter.

NY Homicide Appeals: Vehicular Manslaughter

A person commits the NY crime of vehicular manslaughter when the person causes the death of another person while operating a motor vehicle in an intoxicated condition.

NY Homicide Appeals: Criminally Negligent Homicide

A person commits the NY crime of criminally negligent homicide when, “with criminal negligence, he causes the death of another.” The NY crime of criminally negligent homicide requires a more serious form of negligence than the ordinary negligence required in a civil action.

Issues in a NY Homicide Appeal

A NY homicide appeal often involves multiple issues, including whether there is sufficient evidence to support each of the elements of the type of NY homicide charged. For example, if the person is charged with a form of NY homicide alleging a depraved indifference to human life, there may be an issue in a NY homicide appeal whether the defendant’s conduct was so egregious as to be “depraved.” Likewise, there may be questions in a NY homicide appeal about whether the defendant committed the act, whether the defendant’s actions caused the death, or whether the defendant possessed the requisite mental element to constitute the NY homicide charged.

A NY homicide appeal may contend that other errors occurred in the NY homicide case that resulted in the defendant’s wrongful conviction and imprisonment.  A NY homicide appeal may argue that errors deprived the defendant of due process or fair sentence. A NY homicide appeal focuses on errors that the defendant claims should result in some form of affirmative relief. Errors can happen before trial (click here for illustrations of NY homicide appeal Pre-Trial Errors). The trial judge in a NY homicide trial can also commit errors during the trial (click here for illustrations of NY homicide appeal Trial Errors). Errors in a NY homicide case can also happen at sentencing (click here for illustrations of NY homicide appeal Sentencing Errors).

NY Homicide Appeals to NY Appeals Courts

Most NY homicide appeals go to one of the four Departments of the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of New York. (In the First and Second Departments, NY homicide appeals may go to Special Terms of the Supreme Court) (Click here for a list of the counties in which a case is tried and the corresponding NY Appeals Courts to which the NY homicide appeal will likely go).

Representation by NY Criminal Appeals Lawyer Bruce R. Bryan

As shown in his attorney biography, NY criminal appeals lawyer Bruce R. Bryan has the high-caliber experience and commitment to excellence to effectively argue to a NY criminal appeals court the strengths of your positions and the weaknesses in the People’s case. Over his career of more than 20 years as a NY criminal appeals lawyer, he has handled numerous NY criminal appeals, including NY homicide appeals.

He is the author of Guide to Criminal Appeals, Review and Parole in New York, a groundbreaking work explaining the appeals process on NY criminal appeals (click here for a Free Downloadable Copy of his book). Mr. Bryan is an Adjunct Professor of Appellate Advocacy at Cornell Law School, one of the leading legal institutions in the United States. He lectures other lawyers at programs on criminal appeals to NY appeals courts. He has appeared before the Supreme Court of the United States and high-level United States Circuit Courts of Appeal on federal criminal appeals.

To inquire about retaining Mr. Bryan to handle a NY homicide appeal, or on a case in a related area of his practice, please contact him at his offices in Syracuse or White Plains, New York. Call 315-280-8790 or 914-281-1850 to request an appointment or consultation.

B. Bryan, "Defendant's Guide to Criminal Appeals, Review & Parole in New York," (2005)


Guide to Criminal Appeals, Review & Parole in New York | Bryan Criminal Appeals Lawyer NY

The object of appellate advocacy is to persuade. The winning advocate focuses the court on the strength of your case. Read More

Cornell Adjunct Professor of Law


Guide to Criminal Appeals, Review & Parole in New York | Bryan Criminal Appeals Lawyer NY

As an adjunct faculty, Professor Bryan teaches "Advanced Persuasive Writing and Appellate Advocacy" to second and third year law students at Cornell Law School. Read More