MURDER is the unlawful killing of a human being, or a fetus, with malice aforethought. In California, murder is divided into two degrees. A murder which is perpetrated by means of an explosive device, metal penetrating ammunition, poison, lying in wait, torture or any other kind of willful, deliberate and premeditated killing, or which is committed in the perpetration of, or attempt to perpetrate, arson, rape, carjacking, robbery, burglary, mayhem, kidnapping, or certain sexual offenses, or in the commission of a “drive by” shooting, is MURDER IN THE FIRST DEGREE. All other kinds of murders are of the second degree.
Every person guilty of murder in the first degree shall be punished by death, imprisonment in the state prison for life without the possibility of parole, or imprisonment in the state prison for a term of 25 years to life. Second degree murder, with some exceptions, is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for a term of 15 years to life.
Sal Ciulla has over 35 years experience in handling serious criminal cases such as murder and manslaughter. He has personally defended clients in death penalty cases and tried over 25 murder cases to verdict. In the courtroom, there is no substitute for experience.