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Attempted murder

Find out what attempted murder is.

Criminal law
Attempted murder

As we unfortunately know, crimes exist today in any part of the world, although in some countries more than in others they are still present and we must pay them the attention they deserve. Anyone who has worked with the law knows that there are countless cases that are registered daily about any type of crime.

Some of these crimes are minor and easy to carry, unlike others such as attempted murder, which, although there is no crime as such, since the objective is to kill and in the end it is not carried out. The criminal, although he has not achieved it, has committed a crime and carries some sanctions in the eyes of the law.

Everything you need to know about attempted murder.

First of all, we are going to explain what this type of homicide consists of and its particularities. Attempted homicide is considered to be any crime in which the perpetrator tries to kill a person, but fails for reasons beyond his control. It is important to bear in mind that the author's intention must be the intention to end the person's life and that the intention itself already represents the crime, even if death is not achieved.

It is important to know how to differentiate between attempted homicide and the crime of injury, the first is only fulfilled if the main objective is the death of the person, while in the second the only objective is to cause damage or injury. On the other hand, it should be noted that it is not necessary to injure the person to try to commit the homicide, although it is common for the victim to find some damage due to the attack is not essential.

The attempt appears when a person has already started to carry out the criminal conduct, but, for an external reason, is unable to complete it. The subject acts with fraud since he has the will to execute the act, but he cannot consummate the action only due to the irruption of a circumstance that is foreign to him. We could consider that it refers to a term known as an imperfect crime.

What can determine that we are faced with attempted homicide is that the objective occurs, which means the death of the victim. So if the person dies we are facing the consummated crime. If this is not the case, it will be an attempt.

There is a particular situation that can mitigate the penalty in this type of homicide. In the event of desistance, that is, when the perpetrator of the crime has voluntarily interrupted the acts of execution, the one who desists from the crime can even get an exemption from punishment. In any case, all related acts that may constitute a crime will be punished, such as possession of a weapon without a license, trespassing or any other possibility of sanction.

It is essential in this case to demonstrate that the objective was homicide because, otherwise, it could be considered a crime of injury with a much lighter sentence and for different purposes, without remedying the consequences for the parties involved.

Aggravating factors

The aggravating factors that can be linked to an attempted homicide are the same as those of a completed homicide. Treachery, cruelty or even the reward price are ruled out, because they would turn homicide into murder. Despite this, the following factors are taken into account:

- That the motivation is racist or discriminatory due to religion, ideology, ethnicity, race, sexual orientation, gender, disease or disability.

- Recidivism.

- Relationship to the victim.

- Disguise, abuse of superiority or take advantage of the circumstances of place time or help of people.

- Trust abuse.

- Abuse of public office of the culprit.

In these cases, attempted homicide is punished with a penalty in its upper half. The stay in prison can be much longer depending on the aggravating factors that are met in the crime.


In order to correctly understand the penalty for attempted homicide, we have to be aware of the penalty for consummated homicide that we use as a reference.

The crime of homicide is punishable by a prison sentence of 10 to 15 years, although it can go to more in some particular circumstances. Therefore, in the case of being considered attempted murder, a sentence lower by one or two degrees than that legally established in consummated murder can be imposed.

What does this mean? It means that when taking into account a normal homicide, with a sentence of between 10 and 15 years, if it is lowered by a single degree, the sentence is reduced to between 5 and 10 years in prison. If it is lowered two degrees, it becomes from two and a half years to five years.

The difference is considerable, and to that we must also add the aggravating factors mentioned above. In case of serving enough aggravating factors to be the maximum sentence, 22 and a half years, if it is considered tentative we speak of a maximum sentence of 15 years when lowering one degree or 7 and a half years in case of lowering two degrees. .

Now that you know all about attempted murder. It is essential to know that the penalties are variable due to their aggravating circumstances, they are not the same for everyone. It is taken into account that it is a difficult concept to understand and identify in court, but with a good investigation everything is possible.

We hope we have resolved your doubts with this article on attempted homicide. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact Audacia Abogados.

Criminal law

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