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Denver and Aurora Child Abuse Charges | 1-Year-Old Dials 911

Posted by Kyle B. Sawyer | Aug 21, 2015 | 0 Comments

In many child abuse cases in Douglas or Arapahoe County, Colorado, people don't intend any harm towards their child. Unfortunately, criminal charges can still be filed. According to a recent news story, a 1-year-old girl was left by herself at home. Somehow, the child accidentally dialed 911, which led police to her home. When the officers came inside, they found the child inside by herself. Fortunately the girl wasn't injured. It was only a short time after the police arrived that a family member returned to the home. In Colorado, these actions can lead to criminal charges for Child Abuse.

Child Abuse in Denver and Across Colorado, C.R.S. 18-6-401

Since no injury or harm resulted to the child, the family member would likely face charges of Child Abuse under C.R.S. 18-6-401(7)(b), which says:

“Where no death or injury results, the following shall apply:
  • An act of child abuse when a person acts knowingly or recklessly is a class 2 misdemeanor;
  • An act of child abuse when a person acts with criminal negligence is a class 3 misdemeanor.”

If the family babysitter knew the child was home by herself, she could face a class 2 misdemeanor charge, resulting in up to 12 months in the Denver County Jail. It's possible she wasn't aware that her child was in the home with no supervision. If that was the case, she could face lesser charges of a class 3 misdemeanor, resulting in a possible Douglas County Jail sentence of 6 months.

Facing Child Abuse charges?

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Jefferson County Felony And Misdemeanor Child Abuse, C.R.S. 18-6-401(7)(a)

When death or injury results from child abuse in Jefferson County and across Colorado, there are more serious consequences. Depending on how a person acts during the child abuse, he or she could face between a class 2 misdemeanor charge to a class 2 felony charge.

Where Death or Injury Results

Mental State / Injury Type

Penalty

Sentence

  • Someone acts knowingly or recklessly and causes death of a child
  • Class 2 Felony Child Abuse
    • except as provided in paragraph (c) of subsection (7)
  • 8-24 years in the Colorado Department of Corrections
  • Someone acts with criminal negligence and causes death of a child
  • Someone acts knowingly or recklessly and causes serious bodily injury to a child
  • Class 3 Felony Child Abuse
  • 4-12 years in DOC
  • Someone acts with criminal negligence and causes serious bodily injury to a child
  • Class 4 Felony Child Abuse
  • 2-6 years in prison
  • Someone acts knowingly or recklessly and causes any injury besides serious bodily injury
  • Class 1 misdemeanor Child Abuse
  • Class 5 Felony Child Abuse
    • if committed under what's described in paragraph (e) of subsection (7)
  • Class 1 misdemeanor: 6- 18 months in Denver County Jail
  • Class 5 Felony: 1-3 years in prison
  • Someone acts with criminal negligence and causes any injury other than serious bodily injury
  • Class 2 misdemeanor Child Abuse
  • Class 5 Felony Child Abuse
    • if committed under what's described in paragraph (e) of subsection (7)
  • Class 2 misdemeanor: 3-12 months in Arapahoe County Jail
  • Class 5 Felony: 1-3 years in DOC

The statute for Child Abuse is quite long, and detailed. You can find C.R.S. 18-6-401(7) at the bottom of this blog for references pertaining to the table above.

Denver Child Abuse and Neglect Are Common: Contact an Attorney if Facing Charges

In Denver and Adams County, people are charged with Child Abuse for mistakes made with no intent to hurt their child. Perhaps a mother is in a hurry to grab something for her husband on the way home. When she runs into a store, she leaves her 2-year-old child in the car sleeping. If other people notice the child and alert police, the woman could face charges of Child Abuse. We understand how unfair and frustrating charges of Child Abuse can be in most situations. As criminal defense lawyers in the Denver-metro area, we want to stand by your side  when you are accused. Contact our office today if facing charges of Child Abuse in El Paso, Douglas or Morgan County.

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If you or a loved one has been charged with felony or misdemeanor Child Abuse, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and consult the best criminal defense lawyers at the O'Malley Law Office for a free consultation at 303-830-0880. Together, we can protect your future.Request a Free Consultation

Colorado Child Abuse Statute–C.R.S. 18-6-401(7)

(7) (a) Where death or injury results, the following shall apply:

(I) When a person acts knowingly or recklessly and the child abuse results in death to the child, it is a class 2 felony except as provided in paragraph (c) of this subsection (7).

(II) When a person acts with criminal negligence and the child abuse results in death to the child, it is a class 3 felony.

(III) When a person acts knowingly or recklessly and the child abuse results in serious bodily injury to the child, it is a class 3 felony.

(IV) When a person acts with criminal negligence and the child abuse results in serious bodily injury to the child, it is a class 4 felony.

(V) When a person acts knowingly or recklessly and the child abuse results in any injury other than serious bodily injury, it is a class 1 misdemeanor; except that, if it is committed under the circumstances described in paragraph (e) of this subsection (7), then it is a class 5 felony.

(VI) When a person acts with criminal negligence and the child abuse results in any injury other than serious bodily injury to the child, it is a class 2 misdemeanor; except that, if it is committed under the circumstances described in paragraph (e) of this subsection (7), then it is a class 5 felony.

(b) Where no death or injury results, the following shall apply:

(I) An act of child abuse when a person acts knowingly or recklessly is a class 2 misdemeanor; except that, if it is committed under the circumstances described in paragraph (e) of this subsection (7), then it is a class 5 felony.

(II) An act of child abuse when a person acts with criminal negligence is a class 3 misdemeanor; except that, if it is committed under the circumstances described in paragraph (e) of this subsection (7), then it is a class 5 felony.

(c) When a person knowingly causes the death of a child who has not yet attained twelve years of age and the person committing the offense is one in a position of trust with respect to the child, such person commits the crime of murder in the first degree as described in section 18-3-102 (1) (f).

(d) When a person commits child abuse as described in paragraph (c) of subsection (1) of this section, it is a class 3 felony.

(e) A person who has previously been convicted of a violation of this section or of an offense in any other state, the United States, or any territory subject to the jurisdiction of the United States that would constitute child abuse if committed in this state and who commits child abuse as provided in subparagraph (V) or (VI) of paragraph (a) of this subsection (7) or as provided in subparagraph (I) or (II) of paragraph (b) of this subsection (7) commits a class 5 felony if the trier of fact finds that the new offense involved any of the following acts:

(I) The defendant, who was in a position of trust, as described in section 18-3-401 (3.5), in relation to the child, participated in a continued pattern of conduct that resulted in the child's malnourishment or failed to ensure the child's access to proper medical care;

(II) The defendant participated in a continued pattern of cruel punishment or unreasonable isolation or confinement of the child;

(III) The defendant made repeated threats of harm or death to the child or to a significant person in the child's life, which threats were made in the presence of the child;

(IV) The defendant committed a continued pattern of acts of domestic violence, as that term is defined in section 18-6-800.3, in the presence of the child; or

(V) The defendant participated in a continued pattern of extreme deprivation of hygienic or sanitary conditions in the child's daily living environment.

Image Credit: Pixabay – OpenIcons

About the Author

Kyle B. Sawyer

I have a passion for defending others in criminal cases. I am able to empathize with my clients and understand their emotions and fears. I have a unique perspective on the criminal justice system and I understand what it feels like to be wrongly accused of a crime.

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If you or a loved one is facing criminal charges in the Denver area, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact the best criminal defense lawyers at O’Malley and Sawyer, LLC at 303-830-0880. Together, we can protect your future. Request a Free Consultation

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