Mecklenburg County Child Abuse Lawyer

Child abuse is defined specifically in the Code of Virginia and includes a broad range of conduct that could lead to harm to the child, whether emotional or physical. When a child abuse allegation has been made, it is possible that the person could be immediately charged with misdemeanor or felonious criminal conduct that could result in both the separation of a parent from their child or possible incarceration pending trial on the criminal charges.

If you face allegations or charges of child abuse, you should reach out to an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. A Mecklenburg County child abuse lawyer could scrutinize the prosecution’s case against you and fight for a positive resolution to your case.

First Steps After a Child Abuse Allegation

When child abuse is reported, it will be investigated by authorities. The agency that conducts this investigation can vary depending on how it was reported. Investigation could be completed by the Department of Social Services, by law enforcement, or by a combination of the two. Depending on what the investigation yields, criminal charges could follow.

Long-Term Consequences

Depending on the circumstances of the case, a child abuse conviction could lead to limited or supervised custody and visitation with the person’s child. In especially serious cases, it could mean that the accused person is forbidden from any contact with that child until the child is 18 and decides on their own whether they want to have contact with their parent. In addition to the family consequences, a child abuse conviction could be felonious and could result in multiple years in prison.

Civil Cases

Custody and visitation cases are civil in nature, but child abuse allegations will have a significant effect, if not a deciding effect, on the outcome of a case. It is also possible that the Department of Social Services could initiate a child removal case seeking to terminate the parental rights of an individual depending on the nature of the allegations of child abuse. The case is civil in nature even though it feels criminal, and the results of the criminal case could affect a child removal or parental rights termination case as well.

The decisions and conclusions of a civil case should not be admitted as evidence in a criminal case, but any facts that are gathered as a result of investigating the civil case are facts that could later be introduced during a criminal case. The civil investigation could ultimately make it more or less likely that an individual is convicted of the crime.

How a Mecklenburg Child Abuse Attorney Could Help

Child abuse comes with very serious consequences, both following a conviction and also while a charge is pending. In order to avoid the negative consequences that come from such an allegation, it is crucial that an individual seek the assistance of an experienced Mecklenburg child abuse lawyer. Even if somebody insists that they are innocent, that does not mean that they would be shown to be innocent without having an attorney take actions on their behalf to effectively defend them of the charges.

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