Tampa Child Abuse Attorney
What is Child Abuse?
Child abuse is defined by the Florida Statutes as the intentional infliction of physical or mental injury, an intentional act that could reasonably be expected to result in physical or mental injury or active encouragement of any person to commit an act that results or could reasonably be expected to result in physical or mental injury to a child. Child abuse can lead to lifelong trauma as the minor matures into adulthood.
Knowing or willful child abuse is a Class 3 Felony if the abuse does not result in causing great bodily harm, permanent disability, or permanent disfigurement to the child. A Class 3 felony is punishable by no more than five years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000. Also, if convicted the court may order that the defendant pay restitution to the victim.
What is Aggravated Child Abuse?
Aggravated child abuse occurs when a person intends to harm a child physically or emotionally. According to Florida Statute 827.03, a person can commit aggravated child abuse if they:
- Commit aggravated battery on a child. This means a person either uses a deadly weapon against a child or causes severe bodily injury, permanent disfigurement, or permanent disability;
- Willfully torture, maliciously punish, or cage a child; or
- Knowingly or willfully abuses a child and in doing causes the child great bodily harm, permanent disability, or permanent disfigurement.
Aggravated child abuse is a Class 1 Felony, punishable by up to 30 years in prison and a fine of $10,000. Aggravated child abuse results in severe and lasting physical injuries to the child as well as emotional ones. Because of this, Florida’s penalties for an aggravated child abuser are harsh. As such, it is crucial that you work with an experienced Tampa criminal child abuse defense lawyer who has the knowledge and experience to prove to the court the actual circumstances or to drastically reduce your sentence through experienced negotiation. If you have been accused of aggravated child abuse, you will want a skilled Tampa child abuse attorney who understands the intricacies of Florida law surrounding child abuse and the differences between child abuse and aggravated child abuse.
The skilled criminal defense child abuse attorneys in Tampa at the law firm of All Family Law Group, P.A. have the experience and knowledge to aggressively represent you through the challenging legal system. Call 813-672-1900 or contact our firm online to schedule a free initial consultation to discuss the options available to you. Non-business hours please call (813) 551-3903.
Evidence of Child Abuse and Aggravated Child Abuse
Unfortunately, the evidence used by prosecutors in child abuse cases does not always provide the full picture of what happened, and often paints the defendant in an unrealistically dark light. Take, for instance, the case of a Florida man who was convicted of aggravated child abuse for breaking several of his infant son’s bones. The Tampa Bay Times reported that his case will be heard by the 2nd District Court of Appeals after a recent peer-reviewed medical article was published that could help show that he was not at fault. According to the researchers, some child abuse cases involve analyzing a young child’s broken bones and are flawed because metabolic bone disease, also known as bone fragility disorder, mimics physical violence caused by an adult. Similarly, shaken baby syndrome has often gone misdiagnosed and caused false convictions. With young infants, nobody can ask them what happened, so medical documents and other parent’s testimonies become the primary evidence. Often, other parties have their own motives, which may involve making false accusations against the defendant in order to receive full child custody rights over their other children.
Our Child Abuse Lawyers at All Family Law Group are Prepared to Help
It is in our nature to want to protect the children in our community. Unfortunately, when a child is hurt, it is easy for people in the child’s community to misplace the blame and wrongfully accuse a person of child abuse. If you are facing allegations of aggravated child abuse, you need to have a skilled attorney who can research your case and represent your account of what happened to the court. Get in touch with a Tampa criminal defense attorney today by contacting the All Family Law Group, P.A. at 813-672-1900. Or if you have an emergency and it is necessary for you to call after hours, weekends or on holidays, then please call (813) 551-3903 for assistance. Your call will be returned at the earliest available opportunity.