Williamson County Child Abuse Accusations
If you have been accused of child abuse in Williamson County you are facing severe penalties, both civil and criminal.
Child abuse is a felony offense under Texas state law. The penalties related to child abuse vary depending on the type of injury.
Most child abuse cases have a large number of variables and can be very complex matters. You need a Williamson County criminal defense lawyer to provide you with counsel and guidance.
Stephen Hesse has a thorough knowledge of the laws pertaining to child abuse crime. As a former prosecutor, Stephen was recognized as “Prosecutor of the Year” by the Williamson County Children’s Advocacy Center for his efforts in fighting crimes against children. This experience is essential in providing the best possible outcome to your individual case. The state can move quickly to secure evidence and strengthen arguments for a conviction, so it is important that you reach out to an attorney as soon as possible.
CRIMINAL PENALTIES FOR CHILD ABUSE IN WILLIAMSON COUNTY
State Jail Felony: Punishable by 180 days-2 years in jail and a fine up to $10,000 if guilty of reckless acts which caused serious bodily or mental injury.
Third Degree Felony: Punishable by 2-10 years in prison and an up to $10,000 if guilty of acting intentionally and causing bodily injury.
Second Degree Felony: Punishable by 2-20 years in prison and a fine up to $10,000 if guilty of reckless acts
First Degree Felony: Punishable by 5-99 years in prison and a fine up to $10,000 if guilty of acting h intentionally or knowingly and caused serious bodily or mental injury.
THE MAJOR TYPES OF CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT
Within the minimum standards set by The Federal Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment act (CAPTA), each State is responsible for providing its own definitions of child abuse and neglect. Most States recognize four major types of maltreatment: physical abuse, neglect, sexual abuse, and emotional abuse.
Additionally, many States identify abandonment, parental substance use, and human trafficking as abuse or neglect. Some of these types of maltreatment may be found separately or they can occur in combination.
Physical Abuse is a non accidental physical injury to a child caused by a parent, caregiver, or other person responsible for a child and can include punching, beating, kicking, biting, shaking, throwing, stabbing, choking, hitting (with a hand, stick, strap, or other object) burning or otherwise causing physical harm. Physical discipline, such as spanking or paddling, is not considered abuse as long as it is reasonable and causes no bodily injury to the child.
Neglect is the failure of a parent or other caregiver to provide for a child’s basic needs, i.e., food, shelter, lack of appropriate supervision.
• Failure to educate a child or attend to special educational needs
• Failure to provide emotional support and needs
• Failure to provide psychological care
• Permitting a child to use alcohol or other drugs
Sexual Abuse. Sexual abuse of a child carries additional penalties and consequences. For more information on criminal defense of child sexual abuse see child molestation Williamson County.
Emotional Abuse is an action that results in a marked impact on a child's growth, development, or psychological functioning. Emotional abuse includes extreme forms of punishment such as confining a child in a dark closet, or belittling to the point that it results in noticeable effects on the child's daily functioning.
• Constant criticism
• Withholding love, support, or guidance
YOU ARE REQUIRED TO REPORT SUSPECTED ABUSE
Anyone “having cause to believe that a child’s physical or mental health or welfare has been or may be adversely affected by abuse or neglect” MUST report the case immediately to a state or local law enforcement agency or the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services.
Current Texas law requires that certain types of professionals, such as teachers, physicians, nurses or day care workers make a verbal report to the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services or any state law enforcement agency within 48 hours after determining that reasonable cause exists to suspect abuse.
Failure to report is a class B misdemeanor punishable by a fine up to $2,000, 180 days in jail or both.
FREE AND CONFIDENTIAL CONSULTATION
The Steve Hesse Law Firm is the criminal defense attorney you need on your side. Child abuse is a serious crime in Texas. Make sure you get the absolute best results your case can offer. Contact Stephen Hesse for a free and confidential consultation by calling 512-930-2120 or fill out the contact form on this page.