Murder in the Third Degree: Reckless Homicide

In Minnesota, reckless homicide is encompassed by murder in the third degree. Murder in the third degree is defined by Minn. Stat. §609.195:

Whoever, without intent to effect the death of any person, causes the death of another by perpetrating an act eminently dangerous to others and evincing a depraved mind, without regard for human life, is guilty of murder in the third degree and may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than 25 years.

Minnesota cases discuss murder in the third degree as an act that inevitably endangers human life, as every sane man must know. That the act itself inevitably endangered human life is convincing proof that the doer had a depraved inclination to mischief; that he had no regard for social duty; and that he was generally reckless of life, possessed in short, of a depraved mind within the meaning of the statute.


Being found guilty of third degree murder can lead to up to 25 years in prison.

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