If you are accused of putting a child at risk of harm, you might be concerned and confused. Sometimes, others misinterpret reasonable actions, which could lead to endangerment charges. Working with a seasoned attorney is critical because these charges could carry harsh penalties.
Call a Tolleson child endangerment lawyer as soon as possible. Grand Canyon Law Group will work to ensure prosecutors and the judge hear your side of the story and consider all the relevant facts and circumstances.
Many states have laws that outline the crime of putting a child at risk. Arizona has no such law. Instead, Arizona Revised Statute §13-1201 makes it a crime to put anyone in danger of imminent death or physical injury.
Although child endangerment is not a separate crime in this state, prosecutors, judges, and juries might look more harshly at someone who allegedly endangered a child or other vulnerable person. Additionally, the child does not need to experience actual harm—only a risk of harm is necessary to support an endangerment charge.
The definition of endangerment is vague enough that a person could face endangerment charges resulting from an act that is not inherently hazardous. A Tolleson attorney at our firm can review the evidence that led to an endangerment arrest and challenge the prosecutor’s contention that the act put a child in danger.
If the act that led to the charge allegedly put a child in danger of physical injury, the charge is a Class I misdemeanor. If the act allegedly put the child at risk of imminent death, the charge is a Class 6 felony.
The consequences can be harsh regardless of whether the charge is a misdemeanor or felony. The presumptive sentence upon conviction for a Class I misdemeanor is six months in jail. However, if the person had a previous endangerment conviction within the past two years, they could face a felony charge.
If convicted of a felony endangerment charge, the defendant could face two years in prison. However, if they had previous felony convictions or there were aggravating circumstances, the sentence could be up to six years in prison. Our dedicated Tolleson attorneys can present mitigating factors to reduce the severity of potential penalties or work to defeat the charges.
One of the most difficult aspects of a child endangerment charge is the impact it could have on a defendant’s personal life. A conviction for child endangerment could impact child custody and visitation proceedings. In some cases, child endangerment charges could lead to the Department of Child Safety becoming involved. In the worst-case scenario, a person convicted of child endangerment might lose parental rights.
Child endangerment charges could make it difficult or impossible to obtain certain professional licenses or employment in fields that involve working with children or vulnerable adults. A skilled local attorney at Grand Canyon Law Group can work tirelessly to achieve an outcome that does not have a lingering impact on the accused’s family life or employment prospects.
Child endangerment charges can wreak havoc on your personal and professional life and could lead to a jail sentence. With such high stakes, working with an experienced criminal attorney is a must.
At Grand Canyon Law Group, a Tolleson child endangerment lawyer will challenge every aspect of the prosecutor’s case and expose its weaknesses. With our help, you could achieve a reduced charge or even a dismissal and avoid the harsh consequences of an endangerment conviction. Call us today to get started.