Georgia Criminal Defense Blog

Analysis of Georgia Murder Laws After Barrow County Teenager's Body Found

Posted by Richard Lawson | Apr 15, 2018 | 0 Comments

Barrow County has just uncovered what could potentially be a horrific crime involving two teenagers. Last Friday Barrow County Sheriff's Deputies arrested a 16-year-old boy on charges of murder. 

No names nor has any information regarding the death of a local teenage girl been released other than the arrest of her boyfriend. 

The boy is being held at a regional youth detention center, and according to the Sheriff's Office, he will be charged as an adult in the death of his girlfriend. 

Deputies were called on Thursday afternoon to a residence where they discovered the girl's body. They were told that it could be a murder scene. The body was found in one of the bedrooms, and the deputies were told that the boy had allegedly left the scene before they arrived. He was located by authorities around an hour later. 

In Georgia, any child who is seventeen years of age or above is considered an adult. Moreover, if a sixteen year old commits the crime on the last day before his or her seventeenth birthday, he or she may still be treated as an adult - no matter what the crime is. 

However, if the child is over the age of thirteen and commits a certain violent crime, he or she will be charged as an adult. This is also known as Superior Court Jurisdiction over Juveniles in Georgia. These crimes include:

In this case, the 16-year-old boy is being accused and charged with murder. So let's look into the Georgia's law on murder. 

Murder in Georgia

Georgia Law defines Murder in Georgia in the Georgia Code under O.C.G.A. §16-5-1(a) as:

“A person commits the offense of murder when he unlawfully and with malice aforethought, express or implied, causes the death of another human being.”

Malice is a wicked or corrupt motive. It can also be defined as an intention to do evil and which the result is fatal, or an unlawful objective to kill without justification or mitigation.

Georgia courts will look to either express malice or implied malice in a murder case. 

  • Express malice is the deliberate intention to unlawfully take the life of another human being, which is manifested by external circumstances capable of proof. 
  • Implied malice is where no considerable provocation appears and where all the circumstances of the killing show an abandoned and malignant heart.

What is the penalty for conviction of murder in Georgia?

In order to be convicted of murder in Georgia, the State of Georgia must demonstrate that the accused person is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt by showing the existence of either express or implied malice. 

The penalty for a murder conviction can include either life imprisonment with or without the possibility of parole or the death penalty. 

If you or a loved one has been charged with a crime in Georgia, contact a Georgia Criminal Defense Lawyer today. Our lawyers can build the best defense possible for you and your case.

About the Author

Richard Lawson

Managing Partner at Lawson & Berry:


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