Challenging a Risk of Injury Arrest in Fairfield
Any accusation that you unlawfully put your child at risk of serious physical or moral harm can have devastating repercussions for everyone in your family, making it essential to seek seasoned legal counsel at your earliest convenience. A lawyer can help with challenging a risk of injury arrest in Fairfield, so call today.
What is Required for a Risk of Injury Conviction?
As with every crime, you are innocent until proven guilty either by pleading guilty of your own volition or a finding of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt after trial. Before you even get to that consideration though, you must first understand what “Risk of Injury” is.
Connecticut General Statutes (C.G.S.) §53-21 specifies several actions that may constitute unlawful “injury or risk of injury to… children.” The definition that most commonly leads to arrests in Fairfield on risk of injury charges is codified in C.G.S. §53-21(a)(1). Under this section of state law, a person commits a class C felony offense if they willfully or unlawfully put any child younger than 16 in a situation that endangers their “life or limb” or is likely to cause them physical or moral harm, or if they knowingly permit a child to be put into such a situation.
Under this definition, it is not always necessary for prosecutors to prove that you intended to cause harm to a child to convict you on risk of injury charges. For example, suppose a domestic dispute between a child’s parents escalated to the point that one parent brandished a deadly weapon. A law enforcement officer might interpret that act as one that endangers the life and limb of a child in the room.
How do I Defend Against Child Endangerment Charges?
With the above in mind, challenging a risk of injury arrest in Fairfield often involves contesting the notion that the child in danger was actually in danger of being injured under the circumstances. Sometimes, cooperating with the Department of Children and Families and complying with a DCF service agreement can be helpful in this regard. However, it is always best to review any agreement with legal counsel before signing it. To learn more about the DCF investigation part of a Risk of Injury Arrest, click here.
What is the Role of the Guardian ad Litem?
In some Connecticut risk of injury cases, the court will assign a neutral party to serve as “guardian ad litem” for the child who was allegedly put at risk of serious harm. This person’s role is to represent the child’s best interests during legal proceedings, ensure the child understands what is going on, and help communicate the child’s opinions and statements about what happened.
This is not a negative development for parents looking to challenge risk of injury arrests in Fairfield. Requesting that a guardian ad litem be appointed can sometimes be a vital component of an effective legal defense, especially if one parent is trying to use a criminal charge as leverage during custody or divorce disputes. During a private consultation, a local attorney can explain this role and advise how best to approach an upcoming court proceeding for risk of injury charges.
Why do I Need a Lawyer to Challenge My Arrest?
Unfortunately, while it is possible to fight back against an allegation like this in court, doing so proactively and effectively can be next to impossible to manage on your own.
Support from a seasoned lawyer is often vital to successfully fight a risk of injury arrest in Fairfield. Whether you have a past criminal record or have never been involved in any criminal or family court case before, your experienced legal representative can provide essential support and guidance throughout your legal proceedings.
Seek Help from a Fairfield Attorney with Challenging a Risk of Injury Arrest
Being arrested on risk of injury charges is a serious matter that could lead to you facing felony-level consequences in criminal court. You may also face a DCF investigation and various other repercussions from the family court. Protecting your rights and your family’s interests in the face of accusations like this can be challenging for anyone, especially if you try to build your defense without guidance from a knowledgeable legal representative.
Challenging a risk of injury arrest in Fairfield can be a more straightforward process with help from the attorneys at our firm. Call Mark Sherman Law today to learn more and click here to read hundreds of client reviews.