Voluntary manslaughter is commonly defined as an intentional killing in which the offender had no prior intent to kill, such as a killing that occurs in the “heat of passion.”
The circumstances leading to the killing must be the kind that would cause a reasonable person to become emotionally or mentally disturbed; otherwise, the killing may be charged as a first-degree or second-degree murder.
For example, Dan comes home to find his wife in bed with Victor. In the heat of the moment, Dan picks up a golf club from next to the bed and strikes Victor in the head, killing him instantly.
Sentencing for Voluntary Manslaughter
California Penal Code Section 193(a)
(a) Voluntary manslaughter is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison for 3, 6, or 11 years.