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Pittsburgh Criminal Lawyer > > Criminal Defense > You Can Get Child Endangerment Charges If You Fail To Seek Medical Treatment For Children

You Can Get Child Endangerment Charges If You Fail To Seek Medical Treatment For Children


Keeping children away from safety hazards is a big job.  Once babies learn to crawl, keeping them away from all the hot, sharp, and poisonous things in the room, even if these hazards are ordinary household items that are harmless to anyone old enough to have the common sense that babies lack, requires almost constant vigilance.  Exploring the environment and learning to walk, run, and climb takes trial and error; a toddler who has never had a boo-boo is a toddler who has been supervised by multiple adults at every waking moment.  No one will suspect you of child abuse if your child has the usual bruises and scrapes that come with being a kid.  If a child gets an injury severe enough to require medical treatment, though, you must take the child to the doctor’s office or emergency room quickly, even if you are worried that you will get in trouble because doctors and other authorities will blame you for failing to prevent the accidental injury.  It is not a crime not to know how fast toddlers can move or how quickly they can turn on the hot bath water; it is, however, a crime to withhold medical treatment from a child who has suffered an acute injury.  If you are in legal trouble because you handled the situation wrong when a child in your care got injured, contact a Pittsburgh criminal defense lawyer.

Running Away From Legal Problems Makes Them Worse

It hurts when people judge you about your parenting skills.  It is bad enough when the judgment is coming from family and friends but worse when it is coming from people who have the authority to take your children away from you.  If doctors or social workers question you about how a child’s injury occurred, you should tell the truth, even if it now seems obvious that you should have done things differently to prevent the injury.  Parenting involves trial and error, but there is no excuse for delaying seeking medical treatment for an injured child.  If you don’t have transportation, call 911 or ask a friend to give you a ride.  Likewise, you should never ignore an order to appear in court.

In the News

On the morning of November 3, 2020, a two-year-old that Ayawna Johnson was caring for suffered burn injuries.  She sought medical care for the child that evening.  An investigation began, because doctors suspected that the injuries were caused by hot bath water, leading police to suspect that Johnson either left the child unattended such that the child could turn on the hot water, or else intentionally bathed the child in water that was too hot.  Johnson was arrested in December 2020 and charged with aggravated assault or endangering the welfare of a child.  She was released on bond the following month.  In October 2023, a judge issued a bench warrant for Johnson’s arrest after determining that she had violated a condition of the bond.

Contact Gary E. Gerson About Child Endangerment Cases

A criminal defense lawyer can help you if you are facing criminal charges for endangering the welfare of a child.  Contact the law offices of Gary E. Gerson in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania about your case.



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