The penalty range for these offenses varies depending on the degree and type of charge. First degree murder carries a much greater penalty than involuntary manslaughter for example. All of these charges are obviously serious and carry the potential for significant incarceration and in some cases the death penalty. In fact, there are very few exceptions to incarceration if convicted in these cases.
The facts surrounding this type of case are very specific to each case and would require a consult before determining any defenses or mitigating circumstances that might exist in your case. There are a number of potential defenses to these charges that can be explored in depth with an attorney.
Because of the nature of the charge it is not recommended that you attempt to handle any aspect of the case without the assistance of counsel. In fact, the Courts are reluctant to allow a defendant to proceed without the assistance of counsel in these matters. The sooner you contact counsel the less the chance of making a mistake which may be damaging to your case and in some cases cannot be corrected later.