Child Endangerment (also known as “Child Abuse”) typically concerns an act or failure to act that causes a child to suffer psychological, emotional or physical abuse.
What is a Child Endangerment Charge?
Under California Penal Code 273a(a)&(b) P.C., you can be charged for willfully placing a child in a dangerous situation or permitting a child to suffer unjustifiable physical or emotional pain. Thus, you can be charged whether your alleged conduct is “active” or “passive”. Active conduct would include an intentional assault on the alleged victim-child. Passive conduct would include severe neglect of the child’s welfare (such as leaving the child in a “hot car”).
Other examples of Child Endangerment include driving while intoxicated when transporting the child, buying or using illegal drugs while the child is with you, excessively punishing the child, physically fighting with someone while you are caring for the child, or otherwise placing the child in harm’s way because of your own negligence.
Child Endangerment is a “wobbler” offense, meaning that the prosecutor can charge you with either a felony or a misdemeanor, depending on the facts of the case and your criminal record. Typically, you will be charged with a felony if it appears the child was placed in imminent danger of serious bodily harm or death. Otherwise, you will likely be charged with a misdemeanor.
What are Examples of Child Endangerment?
Examples of Child Endangerment include the following:
What Does the Prosecutor Need to Prove for a Child Endangerment Charge?
To prove that you are guilty of Child Endangerment under California Penal Code 273a P.C., the prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt each of the following elements (as required by the Judicial Council of California Criminal Jury Instructions CALCRIM 823):
What Happens If I am Convicted of a Child Endangerment Charge?
If you are convicted of Child Endangerment under California Penal Code 273a P.C., you face the following punishment (excluding any sentencing enhancements):
What are My Possible Defenses to a Child Endangerment Charge?
Child Endangerment cases can often be resolved during the investigation stage even before criminal charges are actually filed. Specifically, a highly experienced and skilled Los Angeles County Child Endangerment attorney like Ninaz Saffari might be able to convince the investigating detective to not refer the case to the District Attorney’s Office for prosecution, or to convince the D.A.’s Office not to file charges if the case has already been referred. These are called Pre-Files, which Ms. Saffari has a great deal of experience in successfully negotiating. See her Case Results.
If you are charged with Child Endangerment, Ms. Saffari will first conduct a thorough investigation, often with the help of her private investigator, to ascertain all relevant facts. Again, if possible, she will attempt to get the charges dismissed either before or shortly after they are filed. If she takes the case to trial, she will often use an expert witness who will argue that the alleged harm never occurred, did not occur to the degree claimed, occurred but was the result of an accident or unintentional conduct, or that the District Attorney has otherwise failed to provide enough evidence to meet the high threshold to prove Child Endangerment.
The following are the possible defenses to a Child Endangerment charge:
What Kind of Child Endangerment Cases Has Ninaz Saffari Defended?
Since 2005, Ninaz Saffari has successfully represented many clients against Child Endangerment charges, including both as felonies and misdemeanors, including in felony hot-car where both parents were each facing 12 years in prison. See her Case Results.--
If you or a loved one are currently being investigated or prosecuted for this crime, it is critical that you immediately hire a highly skilled, aggressive and experienced Los Angeles County Child Endangerment criminal defense attorney like Ninaz Saffari. Contact the Saffari Law Firm, P.C. now for a free telephone consultation. If Ms. Saffari believes she can help you, she will immediately schedule a free in-person meeting or, if you are in custody, she will visit you in jail (again, for free and with no obligation to hire her).
Representing All Of Los Angeles County including:
Downtown Criminal Courts Building
Van Nuys Courthouse
San Fernando Courthouse
Long Beach Courthouse