Missouri Child Abuse
In Missouri, a person commits the offense of abuse or neglect of a child if the person knowingly causes a child, who is less than the age of eighteen:
(1) to suffer physical or mental injury as a result of abuse or neglect; or
(2) to be placed in a situation in which the child may suffer physical or mental injury as a result of abuse or neglect.
A person may also commit the offense of abuse or neglect of a child if such person recklessly causes a child, less than eighteen years old, to suffer from abusive head trauma.
Child Abuse Penalty
The State of Missouri classifies abuse or neglect of a child as a Class D Felony, punishable up to 7 years in prison and fines up to $10,000. Missouri punishes this offense further by requiring the offender to serve no less than 1 year of sentence.
Example: if you are sentenced to 2 years for child abuse or neglect, you will be required to serve 1 years of that sentence before being eligible for probation, parole or conditional release.
If you have already been convicted of a child abuse or neglect charge, the penalty becomes a Class B Felony with a penalty of 5-15 years. For your second conviction, you will be required to serve a minimum of 5 years before becoming eligible for probation or parole.
If the child dies during the commission of child abuse or neglect, the penalty is a Class A Felony carrying a penalty of 10-35 years or life.
Child abuse or neglect is an extremely serious charge and can affect not only you, but your entire family. Contact Howard Law at (314) 325-9868 for a free consultation regarding your child abuse or neglect charge and learn what rights and remedies are best for your situation.