A child endangerment charge carries serious consequences, including significant time spent in jail or prison. This stigma surrounding this crime can follow you throughout your life, and affect your ability to maintain employment, go to school, and get special licenses. A wide range of conduct may lead to a child endangerment charge, but an experienced criminal defense lawyer could protect your constitutional rights throughout the litigation process regardless of the circumstances of your offense.
If you are charged with child endangerment in Atlanta, an Atlanta child endangerment attorney could craft a strong defense for your case and help you avoid a conviction.
When a child is in a person’s care and protection, that person is responsible for the child’s welfare and safety. Failure to take reasonable care of a child can result in a charge of child endangerment under state law. A caretaker such as a parent, babysitter, teacher, or other responsible adult is required to undertake reasonable measures to protect children from harm.
A person can be charged with child endangerment even if the child is never harmed. If a child is left or put in a situation that could result in harm, their caretaker could be charged with a child endangerment charge. Examples of common situations that may lead to this charge include, but are not limited to:
There are numerous possible situations that can lead to this criminal charge. Any person charged with this crime, however, has the right to legal representation by a child endangerment attorney in the area.
State law treats those who drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol especially harshly when a child is in the car. This is one of the most common forms of child endangerment charges in the state. For every child that is in the car at the time of the arrest, a separate charge can occur. This means that if a person is driving intoxicated with four kids in the car, the defendant may face four child endangerment charges from one driving incident.
This can quickly turn what is otherwise a misdemeanor offense into a series of felony offenses, even if the defendant has an otherwise clean record. An experienced attorney could help a defendant understand the charges, and defend their case in court.
Both a first and second offense for child endangerment are considered misdemeanors under state criminal law. A first offense may result in a maximum fine of $1,000 while a second offense has a maximum of $5,000.
For every offense after the first two, the charge becomes a felony, a much more serious form of criminal offenses. A felony child endangerment charge can result in up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
A child endangerment charge can have a major impact on your life. The penalties can quickly become severe and could impact you for the rest of our life. With help from an experienced Atlanta child endangerment attorney, you could protect your constitutional rights. Contact us today for a consultation of your case.