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First Degree Endangering the Welfare of a Child
New Brunswick NJ First Degree Endangering the Welfare of a Child Lawyer
When a parent or guardian causes or permits a child to engage in prohibited sexual acts or simulation to create a film or photograph, the parent is guilty of first degree endangering the welfare of a child. This is the most serious variety of endangering the welfare of a child offense that someone can face in New Brunswick at the Superior Court. First degree endangering results in 10-20 years in state prison, a fine up to $250,000, and mandatory registration under Megan’s Law. There is absolutely no doubt that any individual charged with a first degree crime under N.J.S.A. 2C:24-4 should retain a highly knowledgeable defense lawyer to defend them. The attorneys at The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall have over a century of experience handling these cases, including years serving on the other side in the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office. If you were arrested for first degree endangering the welfare of a child in South Amboy, Middlesex, Perth Amboy, New Brunswick or Woodbridge, our lawyers have the qualifications to effectively represent you. An attorney on our staff is available now by calling our New Brunswick Office at 732-246-7126.
How Does The Prosecutor Prove this Offense?
In order to convict an individual of endangering the welfare of a child in the first degree, the state must prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that:
- That the defendant had a legal duty to care for the child or assumed responsibility for the care of the child; and
- Caused or permitted filming or photographing;
- Of a child under the age of 16 engaged in prohibited sexual acts; and
- Knew or reasonably should have known that the acts were being filmed or photographed.
A defendant “causes or permits” a child to engage in these acts when they allow or entice the minor into participating in the conduct. The state has the burden of showing that the child is actually under the age of 16, but it is not a defense that the defendant was unaware of the child’s age. Accordingly, a defendant’s mistaken belief that the child was over the age of 16 is not going to provide a defense to an endangering the welfare of a child charge. The state must also show that the defendant was aware that the sex acts were being filmed or photographed.
If a defendant is convicted of first degree child endangerment they face serious criminal penalties. The penalties associated with this first degree sex offense include a mandatory term of imprisonment in state prison for between 10 and 20 years. Upon release from jail, the defendant is subject to community supervision for life under Megan’s Law. A fine of up to $250,000 may also be imposed.
Our First Degree Endangering the Welfare of a Child Lawyers Lawyers Are Ready to Assist You
If you are under investigation or were already charged in Highland Park, South River, Cranbury, Spotswood or another municipality, a good lawyer is an absolute must. Attorneys on the staff of The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall are ready to assist you immediately in our Woodbridge Office by calling 732-634-0700. Contact us for a free consultation anytime 24/7.