The laws in the Connecticut penal code are designed to protect the rights and well-being of all citizens. This especially applies to people who cannot protect themselves, like children. Anyone who acts in a way that puts a child at risk of harm or injury may face charges in criminal court. Convictions are often felonies that often come with mandatory minimum prison sentences.
It is essential that you understand your rights and the potential consequences of a conviction if you are accused of endangering a child. Let a Hartford child endangerment lawyer work to protect your freedom and future against these severe charges. Ruane Attorneys works to refute the criminal charges at the core of the case and preserve your family life.
Types of Child Endangerment Charges in Hartford
Child endangerment is not a term present in the state’s criminal law. Instead, state law labels these acts as instances of causing injury to a child. Still, the concept remains the same. Anytime an individual takes an intentional action that harms a child, they may face criminal charges. The child does not need to actually suffer harm for a prosecutor to obtain a conviction; simply acting in a way that places a child at risk is illegal.
Leaving a Child Unsupervised
The lowest level of endangering a child can involve leaving a child unsupervised in a public place or vehicle. According to Connecticut General Statute § 53-21a, it is a class A misdemeanor to leave a child under the age of 12 in a public place or vehicle for a length of time that threatens the child’s well-being. If this action occurs between 8 p.m. and 6 a.m., the charge upgrades to a class C felony. Furthermore, leaving the child in these places to obtain an alcoholic drink is also a felony.
Causing Harm to a Minor
Even more serious are allegations that a person has acted in a way that caused harm to a child or was likely to result in an injury. Conn. Gen. Stat. § 53-21 describes situations where a person intentionally causes harm to the physical or emotional well-being of a child or has sexual contact with a child. Convictions here are always felonies, and the most extreme examples can bring mandatory prison sentences. A Hartford attorney at our firm could provide more information about the state’s child endangerment laws and how they may affect a particular case.
Investigations by Child Protective Services
Defendants facing allegations of child endangerment should be most concerned with the potential criminal consequences. However, even if a person manages to avoid a criminal conviction, a mere arrest for an allegation of allowing a child to be in a dangerous situation could have severe consequences.
In addition to the potential criminal penalties, people facing allegations of child endangerment may also face investigations by the State’s child protective services. An investigation can lead to the following:
- The creation of a no-contact order with the child
- The loss of visitation rights
- The child being placed into foster care
A person accused of endangering a child must act quickly to protect their freedom and family life. At Ruane Attorneys, a Hartford child endangerment lawyer could work to dissuade a court from requiring an investigation and allow the defendant’s family life to continue with as little interruption as possible.
Let a Hartford Child Endangerment Attorney Defend You
Allegations of child endangerment or allowing a child to suffer an injury can result from many different scenarios. The law does not care if the defendant is a parent, teacher, babysitter, or camp counselor. Anyone can face these charges.
A guilty finding in these cases can have disastrous consequences for your freedom and your relationship with the child. Not only could a guilty verdict result in a prison sentence, but a court may move to terminate your parenting rights. Let a Hartford child endangerment lawyer work tirelessly to prevent this from happening. Contact Ruane Attorneys immediately to schedule a consultation.