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Is Causing the Death of a Viable Unborn Child Considered Murder In Maryland?

Criminal defense lawyers in Baltimore are aware there a specific provisions dealing with the death of a fetus. A person must have acted with:

  • the intent to cause the death, or
  • grievous injury, or
  • with a wanton disregard for the safety of the unborn.

If an act leads to the death of an unborn, but viable, fetus, the offender can be prosecuted for murder, or manslaughter, as appropriate. The fetus must be at a stage where a reasonable likelihood of survival outside the womb is present. These penalty provisions do not apply to lawful abortion, or to the negligent acts of the mother.