Endangering the Welfare of an Incompetent or Physically Disabled Person in the Second Degree in New York
Like many states, New York has enacted a series of laws meant to protect those in society who are considered to be the most vulnerable. This is often emotionally and physically disabled individuals, as they are not considered to be able to avoid many dangerous situations. The law in New York focuses in especially hard on children, people who have a severe physical disability, and those that declared to be legally incompetent. If you are believed to be endangering the welfare of such an individual, you can be charged under New York Penal Code 260.24. This charge is issued in the second degree if you recklessly engage in any type of conduct is seen to physically, mentally, or morally injure any individual who is unable to care for him or herself due to one the aforementioned reasons.
An Example of Endangering the Welfare of an Incompetent or Physically Disabled Person
Prosecutors do not necessarily need to show intent in order to charge an individual under penal code 260.24. If a person recklessly puts an incompetent or physically disabled person in harm’s way, endangering the welfare of the individual may very well be on the table. This is when you need a NYC criminal lawyer on your side. An example would be leaving your paralyzed wife in the car with the windows up in the middle of the summer. You most likely had no intention of causing your spouse grave bodily harm as a result of doing this, but the reality is that you recklessly put him or her in a dangerous situation as they can possible lower the window to allow the heat to escape the vehicle.
A NYC criminal attorney is aware of the serious nature of this charge. This is why you need to contact a professional firm in your area the moment you discover that this charge has been issued against you. NYC criminal lawyers will work hard to determine the reason behind the accusation and then set out to mount a defense.
In order to be convicted of endangering the welfare of an incompetent or physically disable person in the second degree, the prosecutor must provide that you were reckless in your actions. In order to do this, you need to have been aware that your actions would have resulted in harm to an incompetent or physically disable person. If you knew that and you continue to act anyway, the prosecutor will argue vigorously for a conviction. NYC criminal attorneys are tasked with the job proving your innocence. They will set out to demonstrate that the injury occurred as the result of an accident. You were not being reckless. It is important to remember that accidents are not always the cause of recklessness. In fact, it is the job of the prosecution to prove that you were knowingly reckless with your actions, not the other way around.
It is important to note that endangering the welfare of an incompetent or physically disabled person in the second degree is considered to be a class A misdemeanor in the state of New York. Depending on the circumstances of the injury that occurred you are looking at anything from a 3 year probation to one year in prison, in addition to a pretty substantial fine. Needless to say, this can have quite the negative impact on your life and your reputation. You need to have a criminal lawyer fighting on your side who will protect your legal rights.