March 29, 2017 By Paul Wallin


How to Fight Child Endangerment Charges (PC 273a)

Child endangerment is a very serious crime in California. Under California Penal Code Section 273a, you could face up to six years in state prison and up to $10,000 in fines if you are convicted of felony child endangerment.

That is why it is important to hire an experienced criminal defense lawyer to defend you if you are accused of child endangerment. Our skilled criminal attorneys at Wallin & Klarich have been successfully defending clients facing child endangerment charges for over 40 years. We know how to effectively fight for you.

What is Child Endangerment? (PC 273a)

To be convicted of child endangerment in California, the prosecution must prove all of the following elements of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt:

  • You willfully inflicted, caused or permitted unwarranted physical or mental pain on a child
  • You caused or permitted a child under your care or custody to be injured or placed in a dangerous situation
  • You acted in a way that was likely to cause great bodily injury or death
  • You were criminally negligent by acting in a way that created a high risk for death or great bodily injury and in a way that a reasonable person would have known that the act would harm another person
  • You acted unreasonably while disciplining the child.

Here are some of the defenses our law firm has used to win cases involving child endangerment or child abuse charges:

Reasonable Discipline

Parents are allowed to discipline their children if the act of discipline is considered reasonable. An act is considered reasonable if the punishment was warranted and not excessive under the specific circumstances of your case.

For example, spanking your child may be considered reasonable discipline in certain situations. If you used reasonable discipline, your lawyer will use this legal defense to fight the charges against you.

Child’s Age

For you to be convicted of child endangerment, the victim must be under 18 years of age at the time of your act. You cannot be convicted of this crime if the alleged victim was 18 or older at the time of the alleged abuse.

Unwillful Act

If your actions were not committed on purpose, you may have a valid legal defense to child endangerment charges. This could be the case if you left your child in the care of a close family member or friend, or if someone like an ex-partner takes your child without your consent. Because you did not willfully place your child in a dangerous environment, this could lead to the charges against you being dismissed.

No Criminal Negligence

Ordinary carelessness, a mistake in judgement or inattention can be defenses to child endangerment charges. Our skilled attorneys may be able to establish reasonable doubt that criminal negligence occurred in your case.

False Accusations

Many times, child endangerment charges result from a child making up an allegation or misinterpreting an action. A partner or former spouse may also be trying to get an edge against you in a custody battle.

Our attorneys may be able to attack the credibility of the witnesses and evidence against you to help you beat child endangerment charges.

Contact the Child Endangerment Attorneys at Wallin &Klarich Today

If you or a loved one is facing charges of child endangerment, you need to contact a skilled criminal defense attorney immediately. At Wallin & Klarich, our criminal defense lawyers have over 40 years of experience successfully defending our clients facing child endangerment charges. Let us help you now.

With offices in Orange County, Riverside, San Bernardino, Victorville, Los Angeles, West Covina, Torrance and San Diego, you can find an experienced Wallin & Klarich child endangerment attorney available to help you no matter where you work or live.

Contact our law firm at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or (877) 466-5245 for a free phone consultation. We will get through this together.

AUTHOR: Paul Wallin

Paul Wallin is one of the most highly respected attorneys in Southern California. His vast experience, zealous advocacy for his clients and extensive knowledge of many areas of the law make Mr. Wallin a premiere Southern California attorney. Mr. Wallin founded Wallin & Klarich in 1981. As the senior partner of Wallin & Klarich, Mr. Wallin has been successfully representing clients for more than 30 years. Clients come to him for help in matters involving assault and battery, drug crimes, juvenile crimes, theft, manslaughter, sex offenses, murder, violent crimes, misdemeanors and felonies. Mr. Wallin also helps clients with family law matters such as divorce and child custody.

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