Attorney Shawn Haff of The Criminal Defense Law Center of West Michigan based in Grand Rapids, Michigan is a dependable criminal defense lawyer for defendants charged with child abuse in Grand Rapids, Mi or any county in West Michigan.  Attorney Shawn Haff has defended clients against false charges in West Michigan counties and Grand Rapids, Michigan for many years.

Sometimes the best solution to your case is a plea deal and other times taking your case to trial is the best solution to your case. Either way, The Criminal Defense Law Center of West Michigan will guide you down the path you should be taking if you are facing such extremely serious charges as:

  1. Child Molestation or sex abuse
  2. Criminal sexual conduct
  3. Possession of child pornography or child sexually abusive material
  4. Gross indecency
  5. Criminal Sexual Conduct
  6. Internet sex crimes

Michigan Law

Under Michigan law, abuse of a child covers physical or mental harm to a child “…by an individual who is responsible for the child’s health and welfare.” Abuse of a child can include physical injury, sexual abuse, or maltreatment.

These crimes in Michigan are split into different categories, and the penalties a person charged with this extremely serious crime in Michigan face depend on the category of the crime. There are four categories of this crime in Michigan.

First-Degree Child Abuse Charges in Michigan

In Michigan, First-degree is the most serious charge. If you are facing First Degree child abuse charges in Michigan, law enforcement officials believe that a defendant has intentionally inflicted serious physical or mental harm on a child. Examples of First Degree abuse against a child are when the child has suffered broken bones, injury to internal organs and brain damage. Local prosecutors will be looking to throw the book at anyone charged with inflicting this kind of damage on a child.

At The Criminal Defense Law Center of West Michigan located in Grand Rapids, MI, we understand that your child may have suffered serious injuries that were not caused by you. Our aggressive and experienced child abuse defense lawyers will fight to protect you against these extremely serious charges.

The maximum punishment for first-degree child abuse is life in prison. Contact the aggressive and Attorney Shawn Haff of The Criminal Defense Law Center of West Michigan right away if you are charged with child abuse.

Michigan Second-Degree Child Abuse

Second-degree charges of abusing a child in Michigan is defined by law as where a parent “willfully fails to provide adequate care to a child, and neglects a child’s basic needs for food, clothing, and shelter.” An example this kind of child abuse is a person drunk driving with a child in the car.

This crime in Michigan is punishable by up to ten years in prison.

Third-Degree and Fourth-Degree Child Abuse in Michigan

Third-degree and fourth-degree charges are both high considered misdemeanor charges. Anytime someone is facing a misdemeanor charge in Michigan for harming a child, they may face jail time if convicted. A third-degree charge comes about when the defendant knowingly or intentionally commits an act against a child that caused physical harm. The prosecutor must simply show that the child has been harmed in some way.

Third Degree Child Abuse

Third-degree is a felony. People convicted of this crime in Michigan face up to 2 years in prison. There are some attorneys and even judges who will refer to a charge that carries a maximum penalty of 2 years in prison as a high-court misdemeanor. However, if you are asked on an application if you have been convicted of a felony, you would have to answer yes if you are convicted of this charge.

Fourth Degree Child Abuse

Fourth-degree requires either of the following:

  • the parent or guardian willfully failed to provide food, clothing, or shelter necessary to the child and that the child suffered physical harm as a result; or
  • the parent or guardian committed a reckless act that resulted in physical harm to the child.

People convicted of this crime in Michigan face up one year in jail.

Contact The Criminal Defense Law Center of West Michigan today at 616-438-6719 if you are charged with a crime against a child in West Michigan

According to an article from psychology today, “The abusing of a child can result from physical, emotional, or sexual harm. While child abuse is often in the form of action, there are also examples of inaction that cause harm, such as neglect. Some households that suffer from alcoholism/substance abuse and anger issues have higher occurrences of child abuse as compared to households without. Outcomes of abuse of a child can result in both short and long-term injury, or even death. There are some children who may be unaware that they are victims of child abuse.”

If you want to do some more research on child abuse, please visit the following link.  If you are a victim of abuse, tell your teacher, tell a police officer and seek help immediately!

Our Criminal Defense Lawyers in West Michigan Proudly Serve: Kent County, Ottawa County, Allegan County, Ionia County, Barry County, Berrien County, Mason County, Manistee County, Mecosta County, Oceana County, Muskegon County, Montcalm County, Newaygo County, Kalamazoo County, Lake County, Van Buren County, and the City of Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Our Grand Rapids Criminal Lawyers Also Proudly Serve The West Michigan Cities Of: Grand Rapids, Holland, Allendale, Wyoming, Kentwood, Grandville, Walker, Hudsonville, Grand Haven, Coopersville, Spring Lake, Ionia, Hastings, Stanton, White Cloud, Newaygo, Zeeland and Allegan.