Being accused of or charged with the unlawful neglect of a child is a serious legal matter. A conviction of this offense can lead to severe consequences and needs the attention and services of a reputable and trusted criminal defense lawyer. If you or someone you know is facing such a charge in Greenville, Spartanburg, or the surrounding areas, it is highly recommended that you call on Christopher L. Jones, Attorney at Law. Having a former prosecutor on your side at this critical time is indispensable to your defense. Call today to discuss your case with a Greenville child neglect lawyer.
Unlawful Dealing With a Child and Child Neglect Charges
Unlawful dealing with a child and child neglect are both illegal. The crime of unlawfully dealing means subjecting a child to activity deemed inappropriate for a minor. Such activity includes sexual abuse, drug abuse, tattooing, etc.
In Greenville, child neglect is considered a felony. It can also carry a sentence of up to ten years imprisonment in the South Carolina Department of Corrections. In order to be convicted, the State must prove several things. First, they must prove that the defendant is either a parent, legal guardian, or otherwise legally responsible for the child’s welfare. Not everyone who comes into contact with a child meets this requirement. A capable neglect defense lawyer could further explain the burdens of proof to be met by each side in a case like this.
What Is the Law in Regards to the Unlawful Neglect of a Child?
South Carolina’s law under Code 63 delineates how unlawful neglect of a child is defined. Under this law, you can be charged with a felony if you:
- Put a child under the age of 18 at unreasonable risk of physical or mental harm
- Commit or cause to be committed unlawful and malicious bodily harm to the child that endangers his or her life
- Willfully abandon the child
This can be charged against parents, stepparents, adoptive parents, guardians, or anyone who has a duty of care and management of the child, such as daycare personnel. Parents arrested for this offense will also face social welfare agencies whose job it is to ensure the safety and well-being of children. A skilled attorney could help you deal with these parties after a child neglect charge in Greenville.
Potential Consequences of a Child Neglect Conviction
A conviction of this offense will result in a prison term of up to 10 years and/or fines decided at the court’s discretion along with a permanent criminal record. As a convicted felon, your future will likely be negatively impacted making it difficult to find employment or housing or being qualified for professional licenses.
As in any criminal offense, it will be the burden of the prosecutor to prove all elements of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt. In the face of this, working with a former prosecutor who has unique insight into the process can be of great benefit to your case. A Greenville child neglect attorney could assess the unique factors of your case and work with you to build a defense that challenges the prosecutor’s claims.
Reach out to a Knowledgeable Greenville Child Neglect Attorney
A charge for child neglect can be extremely stressful to deal with. Fortunately, you do not have to handle this process alone. At Christopher L. Jones, Attorney at Law, we are dedicated to helping you achieve the most favorable result possible and will work diligently toward this goal on your behalf. Schedule a consultation with a Greenville child neglect lawyer to get started.