Newport News Child Abuse Lawyer

Being charged with child abuse can be a difficult obstacle to overcome in your life. However, there are professional criminal defense attorneys who may be able to provide you with the legal assistance you deserve. By reaching out to a Newport News child abuse lawyer, you not only give yourself an opportunity to present a solid defense, but you are also hiring someone who may be able to fight tirelessly on your behalf. Do not wait until it is too late, contact an attorney today.

What Constitutes Child Abuse in Newport News?

According to Virginia law, there are two versions of child abuse; active abuse and passive abuse. In order for child abuse to be considered active, there must be harm to a child through an injury or putting the child in bad situations in which they run the risk of harm. It can also be defined as a refusal of protecting the child from a dangerous situation. For example, if a person is in a house with a dangerous weapon, even though they do not give the weapon to the child, that can be considered neglect and a form of passive abuse.

What Happens After Child Abuse is Reported?

After child abuse is reported, the next steps depend on the circumstances. If it is a situation in which someone outside of the family reports the abuse, such as the child’s school teacher, there may be some sort of investigation done. Often times, social services may get involved and may conduct their own investigation into the case. They may ask questions of the child, as well as the parents and alleged abuser, and can make their charge from that investigation. For more information, get in touch with a Newport News child abuse lawyer.

Potential Immediate Criminal Consequences Associated with Child Abuse

Immediately when convicted of child abuse, a person can lose custody and visitation rights of their children. A person may also end up having to leave their house while the case is pending, depending on the circumstances. The court may order the move as part of a voluntary protective order. If it results in a criminal charge, it could impact the person’s job. It could also cause them further problems regarding their background check and their ability to own a gun or a firearm.

Consequences Associated with a Child Abuse Conviction in Newport News

Child abuse convictions can either be misdemeanors or felonies, depending on the nature of the case. Contributing to the delinquency of a minor is a misdemeanor, for example. If a person has a felony conviction for child abuse, they lose their right to a firearm and their right to a vote or to serve on a jury. These are the types of convictions that a person would have to disclose on any sort of job application, and can be considered barrier crimes that bar the person from certain options, such as adopting children in the future.

Result of a Civil Case Affecting a Criminal Child Abuse Case

Generally, a civil case and criminal case are separate avenues. In civil cases, there is a different standard. Civil cases are based on a preponderance of the evidence, whereas criminal cases involve proof beyond a reasonable doubt. Just because a civil burden is met, it does not mean that a criminal burden will be met and in most cases, a civil finding is not admissible in a criminal case.

However, if there is a successful civil finding of child abuse, that may spur the prosecution on in a criminal case to pursue the trial. If the civil case is unsuccessful and they do not have any sort of additional evidence, then it is not likely to proceed as a criminal case.

Importance of Contacting a Newport News Child Abuse Attorney

A person charged with child abuse should contact a Newport News child abuse lawyer as soon as possible. The potential convictions could be quite serious, and without the representation of an experienced attorney, you may be at serious risk of facing such harsh consequences. By working with an attorney, you are taking the right step towards presenting a professional defense for your self. Call an attorney today to get started on your case.