Reckless Child Abuse- Found Not Guilty at Trial
Our client, a middle school principal, was charged with child abuse. A conviction of this offense would not only cause him to lose his job, but as a convicted felon, he would never be able to work with kids again. Our client made a potentially career saving decision in hiring Chirafisi & Verhoff to represent him in this matter.
The principal was charged with reckless child abuse for washing a child's hand (which had a profanity on it) with gum remover. The child suffered a chemical burn and the parents called the police.
The facts were not in dispute in this case; the only question was whether the client acted recklessly, or if the burn was an accident? This case had drawn considerable attention in the community because of the client's job. Knowing this, a very helpful thing we did on this case was to request that the court send out specific jury questionnaires to gauge the prospective jury members' opinions about the case.
The jury selection ended up taking an entire day--something that is very rare. However, the questionnaires made it much easier to get the people that we believed would be helpful hearing the case onto the jury.
The case was tried in two days and in the end, the client was found not guilty in approximately 5-10 minutes.
The reaction of the jury really says it all in the video linked below: