If you are accused of child abuse, defending yourself can be extremely difficult—especially if the testimony of a child is involved. In addition to your negative portrayal in the community and the media, it may seem impossible to overcome the detrimental nature of child abuse allegations. Fortunately, an experienced criminal defense attorney can build a solid defense strategy and help cast doubt on the prosecutor’s case.
The following are common defenses to child abuse charges:
- False allegations of child abuse. False accusations occur quite frequently, especially if they involve a custody battle between the parents or a dysfunctional family.
- An accident caused the injury to the child. Unless the accident was caused by recklessness or gross negligence, the state of Ohio does not punish accidents. When a child’s injuries are the result of an accident, an individual may raise this as a defense against child abuse charges.
- The injury was caused by something other than child abuse. Whether a child is involved in a fight with another child or a child has a pre-existing condition that contributes to their own injuries, sometimes parents are falsely accused of child abuse based on situations that are non-accidental.
- Religious beliefs. Although quite controversial, some states allow parents to escape child abuse charges if they choose to pray for their sick children as opposed to take them to the hospital.
- Parent’s rights to discipline. As long as it is reasonable and causes no bodily injury, parents are often free to discipline their children in any manner they see fit. But if the injuries of the child are more serious than minor bruising, parents may not apply this defense.
For more information, contact the Law Office of Lorin J. Zaner and request a free consultation with our Toledo criminal defense attorneys today.