Child abuse accusations are not always true, but that does not stop prosecutors from aggressively seeking convictions in these cases. If you have been accused of harming a child, you should speak with an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.
Berry Law features a team of attorneys dedicated to protecting the Constitutional rights of individuals accused of crimes. For our firm, a plea bargain is never the first resort. Our Lincoln child abuse lawyers exhaust all other possibilities in the pursuit of justice for our clients. Reach out to our firm today to discuss your potential defense strategies.
Is It Considered Child Abuse if There Are No Visible Injuries?
It is possible to face charges of child abuse even when the minor in question has not suffered any physical injuries. Nebraska Revised Statute § 28-710 details multiple circumstances that could result in a child abuse charge. Many of these do not require any physical contact with the minor.
Child abuse can involve any act that endangers a child’s physical or mental health. This includes depriving a child of necessities like food or shelter or cruelly confining them in an inhumane way.
Abuse can also occur when a person places a minor in a position where they are likely to be sexually abused or fall victim to sex trafficking. A Lincoln attorney can inform you of the types of acts that are considered child abuse under state law.
Is Child Abuse an Intentional Crime in Lincoln?
The law does not require evidence of an intentional act to obtain a conviction for child abuse. In addition to intentional forms of abuse or neglect, the statute criminalizes acts of abuse that occur knowingly or even negligently.
If prosecutors believe you should have known your actions would or likely could result in a child’s injury or abuse, they can pursue a criminal case. If you are facing child abuse charges, avoid making statements about intent until you speak with an attorney.
What are Common Defenses to Allegations of Child Abuse?
There is no single defense that can guarantee a favorable outcome in a child abuse trial. There are, however, an array of defenses that could apply to these cases depending on the circumstances.
For example, a child abuse attorney might argue the allegation is false. Alternatively, a lawyer can demonstrate that the child’s injuries were accidental or highlight a lack of evidence.
False Accusations and Confusion
One of the most prominent defenses involves claiming the alleged abuse never happened. This defense is especially common with allegations involving young children.
Young children are impressionable and often confused. Occasionally, adults coach minors into telling false accounts of abuse to initiate a criminal case. Your attorney will investigate any claims made by young children to determine whether they are substantiated.
Even if there is no evidence of coaching from another adult, an attorney can argue that the child is confused. To strengthen the case, lawyers often site seminal cases where children were confused or coaxed into giving false statements.
Another common defense strategy involves proving the child’s injuries did not result from an act of abuse or neglect but an accident. However, you must be cautious when using this defense. Adults who act with gross carelessness or recklessness could face criminal charges if they cause an accident that injures a child.
Lack of Evidence
The simplest defense to child abuse charges involves emphasizing the lack of evidence the state has offered. Often, the prosecution will bring these abuse charges with little more than the word of the child. Without more evidence, a jury may not vote to convict. At Berry Law, we will evaluate each of these defenses to determine which options are the best in your child abuse case.
Reach Out to a Lincoln Child Abuse Attorney Today
Cases involving intentional or accidental harm to minors often cause emotions to run high. You may face significant challenges if you choose to go through the criminal justice system on your own.
At Berry Law, we are vigilant in the protection of our clients’ rights. Our Lincoln child abuse lawyers will aggressively defend you at every stage of the legal process. Contact us today to schedule a confidential consultation.