Domestic relationships are often fractured by the presence of spousal abuse or child abuse. Spousal abuse includes physical harm or injury by one spouse upon another, and in aggravated cases, may involve the use of a deadly weapon to cause harm or injury. Non-violent forms of spousal abuse include threats, intimidation, name-calling, and psychological assaults by one spouse upon another. Spousal abuse may also involve sexual attacks and coercive sexual contact. When one party is forced to have sex with another, the circumstances may give rise to a charge of spousal abuse, even in states which do not recognize spousal rape.
Child abuse may also include both physical forms of violence and psychological or verbal abuse. Physical abuse of children may involve hitting a child, kicking, biting or beating a child, throwing something at a child, burning or scalding a child, or using, or threatening to use, a knife or gun on a child. Such physical violence may also involve extreme forms of physical punishment, such as pushing, grabbing, shoving, slapping, spanking, hitting, or attempting to strike a child with an object. Psychological, emotional and verbal abuse techniques directed to a child may involve cursing or belittling the child, insulting the child, and threatening the child.
In addition to child abuse, negligent parents may also be guilty of child neglect or child abandonment when they fail to provide proper shelter and food for their children or otherwise fail to discharge their duties as parents. For example, a parent who leaves a young child alone for an extended period of time with no adult supervision may be guilty of child neglect under state law. Spousal abuse and child abuse cases may be prosecuted by state agencies that oversee the welfare of families and children. In addition, such cases may be filed in the domestic violence court, which can grant restraining orders and protection orders to remove abusers from the household and prevent future misconduct. If you have been a victim of spousal abuse or child abuse, or if you have been falsely charged with such abuse, please contact the Law Offices of Mark S. Guralnick for advice and counsel.