One of the most gruesome factors in a domestic violence case is that children can be victims—like child abuse in Nevada.
The number of domestic violence involving child abuse in Nevada is in terrible heights. According to a report by Child Welfare League of America or CWLA, there were 33,598 reported referrals of child abuse and neglect in Nevada by 2016 and there were 13 deaths somewhere in these cases.
In 2017, deaths of children due to child abuse ramped up by the end of the year in the city of Las Vegas, Henderson, and Paradise, causing great distress to the law enforcement and other agencies concerned with the matter.
Child abuse becomes domestic violence when it is done in the premises of home or being carried out between family members. Know that domestic violence where children are abused can cause great traumatic effects on the victims themselves as well as other people involved. If you are a resident of Las Vegas or any distant counties in Nevada, it is also your responsibility to curb domestic violence by reporting it to the authorities, by protecting your child from abuse, and even defending yourself from such false allegations as to give way to the capture of the real culprits. Moreover, for law enforcement to learn further information about child abuse in Nevada within the domestic backdrop.
What counts as child abuse in Nevada?
According to NRS 432B, child abuse and neglect are comprised of acts such as physical and mental injury which are done with full intention, sexual abuse or sexual exploitation and other similar variations, maltreatment and negligence, and even excessive corporal punishment.
NRS 200.4631 asserts that physical injury is characterized by having a sprain, dislocation, cartilage damage, bone fracture, hemorrhage, and disfigurement such as puncture, burns or, even a bite caused by punching, kicking, and other means of hitting the child. Mental injury is taken when the child is taunted, threatened, and even confined as well as when physical harm is done to them. Still, from NRS 200.4631, sexual abuse on a child can be identified by sexual assault with penetration, lewdness, sadomasochistic abuse, open or gross lewdness, mutilation of the child’s private body parts, and even having a child participate in pornography.
Maltreatment and negligence cover broad subjects but usually means letting the child suffer by abandoning them or leaving them to starve or roam around their own. It also means already specified above. With that, they can be defined as pre-cursor to overall abuse. Excessive corporal punishment, on the other hand, means subjecting a child under extreme conditions in order to discipline them. Many parents or guardians justify that they are only chastising their children, not knowing that it is actually bordering to child abuse and neglect.
What are the penalties for domestic violence with child abuse in Nevada?
Usually, child abuse in Nevada is imposed with such weighty charges to serve as a warning to other people committing or planning to commit crimes against children.
As stated in the NRS 200.508, if you willfully subject a child less than 14 years of age to suffer abuse and neglect which resulted to substantial bodily harm you are guilty of a category A felony with a penalty of being imprisoned for life. This can be dialed down to two years or amped up to 20 years in prison under certain circumstances.
If no substantial physical or mental harm has been done to a child, the defendant will have to face category B felony with the following penalties.
If a first time offender:
- A year to six years in prison
If a second-time offender of the same violation or other crimes:
- Two years to 15 years in prison
When the child abuse and neglect resulted in the untimely death of a child, the case turns to a first-degree murder that seals life imprisonment in the Nevada State Prison.
How to report domestic violence with child abuse in Nevada?
The State of Nevada has a lot of open lines for you to report domestic violence and bring it to the hands of law such as the Clark County Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline, Child Protective Services, the police, or other related authorities.
According to NRS 432B.230, the manner of reporting child abuse in Nevada can be done through any forms of communication a person has access to such as a phone call, a traditional mail, or an electronic mail.
When you have contacted the people in charge, be ready to provide this information:
- Name, address, age, and sex of the child
- Name of the parents or the guardians of the child
- Type and extent of the abuse done or being done to the child
- Name, relationship to the child, and other details of the alleged abuser
- Any evidence that could testify to the abuse
If you discovered a case of domestic violence that concerns children, you need to report it within 24 hours as you can be charged with a misdemeanor if you failed to do so as there is a risk of a child being caused great harm or even death.
What are some possible defenses for domestic violence with child abuse?
While the law is very strict about protecting children from child abuse done under the elements of domestic violence, they would execute penalties to a defendant when the crime is indeed within the bounds of child abuse or neglect. If you are fighting untruthful allegations of this manner, you can use this very notion to avoid child abuse conviction.
One of the most basic forms of defense that you can use says that it was an accident. For example, you were playing with your child and you unintentionally hit them with your arm that sent him or her rolling down the stairs. You can also counter that the injuries seen in the child’s body were his or her own making or due to other accidents that you were not involved in.
The absence of evidence is also a strong argument that you can use. If there are no clear signs of injuries, malnutrition, or emotional instability then the prosecutor will have a hard time to prove your guilt. Audio recordings, footages, and eyewitnesses accounts that do not exist can also mean acquittal of your child abuse charges.
Other plausible defenses to use are:
- You only defended yourself from a child that is being violent
- You were entrapped by your own family
- You are not aware that your child is being maltreated by other people
No child should suffer, especially in the hands of people he or she trusts the most—family. If you know something perpetrating child abuse in a domestic setting, call hotlines now to put an end to the child’s suffering. If, however, you found yourself at the other side and is accused of perpetrating domestic violence, get the help of a Las Vegas criminal defense lawyer to better formulate your defenses.