The law holds children in a special place and one will feel it when speaking to legal experts. They have to say that the legal system presumes that children do not have the mental capacity to take self care and make choices. Hence, a child needs special care and just in case there is a reporting of any child abuse case, the law has strict measures to deal with such an act.
What precisely is the definition of child abuse?
The precise definition says that abuse can be any form of cruelty inflicted upon the child. It could vary from physical harm to emotional damage. In fact it is a varied subject as there could be cases of abandonment, neglect or even the sexual abuse. The legal system has lined up the strictest punishments for offenders. These days the situation has turned better due to the presence of child service agencies. Such agencies constantly investigate cases of maltreatment towards children and have the authority to relocate children from harmful, unhealthy environments.
When precisely does it become a crime?
The legal experts point out that for child abuse crime the offender must engage in an intentional act. The defense legal team may bring up some standard arguments that the injuries are false or perhaps unintentional. One of the most common arguments presented by the defense team in such cases is that it is within the responsibility of a parent to discipline a child. The penalty will be decided by the specific nature of the conduct. The jury pronouncing the judgment may also take into consideration the age of the child.
Some more inputs of child abuse:
It also depends a lot on the identity of the suspected child abuser. Is he/she a legal guardian of the kid or not? If the answer is in the negative then the police department can always conduct an investigation. If you take a peek into the history of such cases one will see that offenders have been given lengthy prison terms.
There has been active child protection:
The government agencies have surely been working hard to protect the children and offer them a bright future. These days every US state has allocated a separate agency for child protection services. They look into cases of abuse and neglect. The laws are powerful to protect children and as stated earlier that if they feel a kid is in imminent danger at home, they have the authority to relocate the child. A child can be put under foster care until they feel that the environment at home is a lot safer.
There is also scope to terminate parental rights:
There could also be extreme cases of child abuse and in such a scenario the authorities are at liberty to terminate the paternal rights. However, an agency cannot do it alone and in such a scenario will have to seek assistance from a court of law. In such cases the kid may be placed for permanent adoption. This is a brief insight into child abuse and how states across the US are gearing up to fight this menace. The fight to protect kids has only got stronger of late due to mandatory reporting laws in place. As a responsible citizen if you come across any instance of child abuse, it is your responsibility to bring it to the notice of the authorities.