Child Abuse Cases in Nevada Decline

December 23, 2010

According to the Nevada Division of Child and Family Services, investigated cases of the Nevada crime of child abuse have been on the decline. Specifically, they fell from 14,322 in 2008 to 12,241 in 2009. This drop may have to do with extra funding to help victims of domestic violence and grants to move foster kids into permanent households.

The Nevada crime of child abuse makes it an offense to willfully cause a child to undergo physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, neglect or endangerment. Typical defenses include corporeal punishment, accident, self-defense, or self-inflicted injuries. Child Protective Services is one of the agencies that may investigate a claim of child abuse.

Penalties for the Nevada crime of child abuse vary depending on the nature and extent of the abuse. For example, willful abuse that involved sexual exploitation of a child 13 or younger and resulted in substantial bodily or mental harm is a category A felony potentially carrying life in prison. But if the defendant merely allowed the abuse to happen and it didn't result in substantial bodily or mental harm, the charge may be just for a gross misdemeanor carrying $2,000 and/or up to a year in jail.

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