Child abuse in Oklahoma comes in differing forms: physical abuse, mental abuse, sexual abuse, and neglect. All of these forms of child abuse are against the law in Tulsa, and all have serious consequences.
Child Abuse in Oklahoma Defined
In Oklahoma, child abuse is defined as harming or threatening harm to a child’s health, safety, or welfare by a person responsible for the child. This includes non-accidental physical or mental injury, sexual abuse, or neglect. Okla. Stat. tit. 10A § 1-1-105
Child abuse in Oklahoma is illegal. The law prohibits a caretaker or any other person from abusing, neglecting, committing any sexual abuse, or exploiting a child in their care.
The crime is a felony punishable by up to a year in county jail, or a fine between $500 and $5,000, or both.
If the child involved is under 12 years of age, the perpetrator could face at least 25 years in prison. Okla. Stat. tit. 21 § 843.5
Child abuse can take the form of:
Neglect: the failure to provide adequate food, shelter, clothing, medical care, supervision, or other necessities of life. Neglect includes abandonment.
Physical Abuse: The non-accidental physical injury of a child under the age of 18.
Sexual Abuse: Any sexual activity with a child or the propositioning of a child to engage in sexual contact. This includes rape, sodomy, incest, lewd or indecent acts such as exposing one’s genitalia to a child, prostitution, having a child sit for pornographic pictures, or exposing a child to pornography.
Mental or Emotional Abuse: Emotional injury to a child sustained through continued rejection, criticism, isolation, or exploitation.
While caretakers of children are particularly targeted by Oklahoma law, the law prohibits any person from committing child abuse.
Also, child abuse in Oklahoma laws treat perpetrators and enablers the same. The failure to protect a child from abuse is treated just as harshly under the law as is the commission of the abuse.
Consequences of Child Abuse
Oklahoma laws are harsh when it comes to child abuse. If convicted, you could spend the rest of your life in prison.
However, there are often mitigating circumstances which will cause a court to give a lighter sentence to a person convicted of child abuse in Oklahoma. Courts often reserve the harsher punishments for particularly severe cases of abuse.
If you are convicted of committing lewd or indecent acts with a child under 16, you could spend 3 to 20 years in prison. If the child is under 12 at the time of the offense, you could spend at least 25 years in prison. A repeat conviction of either offense is punishable by life in prison without the possibility of parole. Okla. Stat. tit. 21 § 1123
A conviction of sexual battery upon a child could mean up to 10 years in prison.
A conviction of using a child for pornography or exposing a child to pornography could mean up to 30 years in prison.
In all child sexual abuse convictions, you will be deemed a sex offender. You will be required to register with the Sex Offender Registry and to abide by all rules and limitations involved.
Free Consultation with a Tulsa Criminal Defense Attorney
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