Having the responsibility of caring for a child can be too much or feel overwhelming to most people. However, you still have a responsibility to care for the child.
If you are charged with the crime of child neglect in Oklahoma City, you can face criminal penalties. You may also face civil penalties such as the loss of parental rights or custody.
This is a serious charge and you should not attempt to defend yourself. An experienced parental defense attorney can help navigate this very serious charge against you.
Defining Child Neglect in Oklahoma
Often times, a third-party who has a relationship with a child may become concerned about their well being at home or under the supervision of a caregiver. If concerned enough, that person may file a report with the police or child protective services that they suspect a child is being neglected.
Under state law, many things may be considered child neglect in Oklahoma City. Those things include:
a. the failure or omission to provide any of the following:
(1) adequate nurturance and affection, food, clothing, shelter, sanitation, hygiene, or appropriate education,
(2) medical, dental, or behavioral health care,
(3) supervision or appropriate caretakers, or
(4) special care made necessary by the physical or mental condition of the child,
b. the failure or omission to protect a child from exposure to any of the following:
(1) the use, possession, sale, or manufacture of illegal drugs,
(2) illegal activities, or
(3) sexual acts or materials that are not age- appropriate, or
(Ok. Stat. Tit. 10a sect. 1-1-105(47)(a))
Each of these leaves open for interpretation what “neglect” means.
For example, leaving your children home alone for an hour may be considered neglect in the same way leaving them home alone for two days can. Many people also believe that parents should not allow young children to walk home alone, and may report this as neglect as well.
Penalties for Child Neglect in Oklahoma
For parents charged with neglect, they may be facing a loss or parental rights or custody, depending on the seriousness of the accusations.
A parent or caregiver accused of child neglect in Oklahoma could ultimately be convicted of a felony crime. Penalties could include up to 10 years in prison.
Free Consultation: Oklahoma City Child Neglect Attorney
Parents and caregivers need to take an accusation of child neglect in Oklahoma City very seriously. For parents, the consequences may mean losing their children forever. For both parents and caregivers, the penalty may mean a decade in jail. An attorney who is experienced in defending these types of cases is necessary at every step of the way.
For more information on our free consultations in child neglect cases, get in touch with the Criminal Defense Law Office of Oklahoma City at (405) 588-4529 (588-4LAW).
If you prefer, send your question directly to an Oklahoma City criminal defense attorney by using the contact form at the top right side of this page.