Murder can be found under Section 229 of the Criminal Code: Culpable homicide is murder:
1. Where the person who causes the death of a human being
- Means to cause death or
- Means to cause bodily harm that he knows will likely cause his death and is reckless whether death ensues or not.
2. Where a person meaning to cause death to a human being or meaning to cause him bodily harm that he knows is likely to cause his death, and being reckless whether death ensues or not, by accident or mistake causes death to another human being, notwithstanding that he does not mean to cause death or bodily harm to the human being or;
3. Where a person, for an unlawful object, does anything that he knows or ought to know is likely to cause death, and thereby causes death to a human being, notwithstanding that he desires to effect his object without causing death or bodily harm to any human being.
Murder can divided into two categories, first degree murder and second degree murder.
First Degree Murder
A homicide is automatically considered to be first degree murder in the following cases:
- If it is planned and deliberate.
- Contracted murder (ex: hiring a hit man).
- Murder of a peace officer (on or off duty. Includes police, wardens, individuals working in a prison etc.).
- Hijacking, sexual assault, or kidnapping.
- Criminal harassment.
- Murder during terrorist activity.
Second Degree Murder
Second degree murder is essentially a ‘catch all’ category meaning that all culpable homicide that is not first degree murder is second degree murder. The main thrust is that a murder is considered to be second degree if it is not planned or deliberate but is still intentional. For example, a murder that occurs in the “heat of the moment” would be considered second degree murder.