Being charged with endangering a minor can be both scary and frustrating, especially when you didn’t do what you are being accused of. To help you better understand some of the ins and outs pertaining to domestic violence charges and how you can get through your Orange County case, speak with one of our Orange County child endangerment lawyer.

What is Child Endangerment?

A person may be guilty of child endangerment if one of the following occurs:

  • You caused or permitted a child to endure mental suffering or physical pain that was unjustifiable.
  • You willfully caused or permitted a child in your care to be injured.
  • You willfully caused or permitted a child to be put into a dangerous situation.

While child abuse requires that the child suffered from an actual injury, that isn’t the case with an endangerment conviction. This is why it is so easy for an innocent person to be put on trial and face prosecution under the endangerment laws in California. There are a variety of different behaviors that could lead to child endangerment charges, such as:

  • Leaving dangerous weapons within reach when there are children in the home.
  • Not getting a sick child the medical treatment they need to recover.
  • Negligently leaving a child with someone that you know has a history of being abusive.

Penalties for Endangering a Minor in Orange County

Depending on the circumstances surrounding the case, the individual could be facing either a misdemeanor or felony charge. If the charges involved the risk of serious bodily harm and possibly death, the offense could be deemed a wobbler. This means it could be charged either way. A misdemeanor charge includes penalties of up to a year in jail, while felonies could land you behind bars for anywhere from two, four or even six years in state prison. When there wasn’t a risk of serious bodily harm or possible death to the child, it will be deemed a misdemeanor.

Because of this, you need to have a trained local attorney working on your child endangerment case right from the beginning. You don’t want to assume everything is going to be fine and run the risk of being put behind bars because you didn’t know what it was that you were up against.

Potential Defenses

Even though it can be quite scary being charged with putting your child in danger, there are things that you can do to get through your case and prevent being convicted of the charges. Because of our extensive experience in the field, our Orange County child endangerment attorneys understand the process involved with investigating, prosecuting and defending against these charges. To help you better understand our process and the type of defenses we use, check out some of the common ones below:

  • The endangerment wasn’t done on purpose, meaning you didn’t do something that you knew would intentionally put the child in harm’s way. For example, an individual who takes their child to a babysitter that is qualified cannot be convicted of endangerment if that baby was taken by the other parent without their consent and later ends up being injured by that parent. They didn’t knowingly place the child in harm’s way.
  • You were wrongly accused. You might be surprised at how many people were accused of committing a crime they had nothing to do with in the first place. If you weren’t even around when the crime happened, you cannot be guilty of it. Oftentimes, bitter ex-spouses and partners often say things out of spite to go after the other party. Children with wild imaginations often end up fabricating stories to make things sound worse than they are. Sadly, police officers are quick to jump on someone that they think is in the wrong even when that person is innocent.
  • You were well within your rights to get after your child and discipline them. Parents are allowed to discipline their children. However, that doesn’t mean you can go overboard in your discipline techniques and such. You have to exhibit caution and make sure the punishment was warranted based on the age of the child and the behavior. This is something you can go over with the lawyer at your meeting. Spanking is one of the most common types of discipline used by parents.
  • You weren’t the person who caused the endangerment to occur in the first place. If you aren’t the person responsible for causing the child to be put in a dangerous situation, you cannot be charged with domestic violence. Prosecutors want to hold someone accountable for what they believe is child endangerment, even when the person they are going after might be innocent. They will jump to conclusions and leave you having to defend yourself for something that you had nothing to do with.

Just because you have been charged with a crime, that doesn’t mean you are going to be convicted of it. There are things that can be done to help put an end to the accusations and allow you to walk away from the whole debacle unscathed. However, it isn’t something you can handle on your own. Being charged with any type of crime is serious business and shouldn’t be taken lightly. You need to hire a top criminal defense attorney to work on your case as quickly as possible.

Contact an Orange County Child Endangerment Attorney

Our Orange County child endangerment know the ins and outs of the industry. When you make the decision to hire this team, you are getting the best in the industry. We don’t just sit back and wait for things to happen. We go out there and get to work on clearing your name as quickly as we can. It is because of this that we are the leading domestic violence law firm in the county.

Instead of waiting for something to happen, take charge of the situation. Give us a call to schedule your appointment and begin working on a solid defense to clear your name and get you back to your regular life quickly and easily. We are here to help in any way you can. The sooner you call and begin working on your case, the better it is going to be for you in the end. Don’t delay in scheduling your appointment with a top defense attorney today.