Gainesville, Ga. – A local woman in Gainesville has been arrested on charges of child cruelty this past week.
Investigators reported that the woman has been accused of neglecting to take her daughter to receive medical treatment for nearly a year. The child is five years old and is suffering from a serious medical condition. She missed over twenty-five doctor's appointments and a full year of physical therapy. She also allegedly suffered from an injury during this time.
As a Georgia Criminal Defense Lawyer, I will outline the law behind cruelty to children in today's post. Read below.
Cruelty to Children in Georgia
Cruelty to Children in Georgia is separated into three different degrees by Georgia Law in O.C.G.A. §16-5-70.
First-degree cruelty to children occurs when a parent, guardian, or other person supervising a child under the age of 18 willfully deprives the child of necessary sustenance to the extent that the child's well being is jeopardized. In addition, cruelty to children in the first degree includes when a person maliciously causes a child under the age of 18 cruel or excessive physical or mental pain.
Second-degree cruelty to children occurs when a person with criminal negligence causes a child less than 18 years old cruel or excessive physical or mental pain.
Third-degree cruelty to children occurs when either a person, who is the primary aggressor, intentionally allows a child under the age of 18 to witness the commission of a forcible felony, battery, or family violence battery; or a person, who is the primary aggressor, having knowledge that a child under the age of 18 is present and sees or hears the act, commits a forcible felony, battery, or family violence battery.
Cruelty to children is considered a felony in Georgia. The penalty can include up to twenty years in prison. The only exception is with third degree child cruelty - a judge has the discretion with this degree to charge it as a misdemeanor instead of a felony.
Call our offices today if you or a loved one has been arrested in the state of Georgia.