CHILD ABUSE BY ORDINARY FORCE
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It is not child abuse for a parent/teacher/person to use reasonable and ordinary force to discipline a child. This is a very difficult line to draw and prosecutors can file Child Abuse charges and leave it to a jury to decide whether there is sufficient evidence to support child abuse or not.
The statute for Child Abuse by Ordinary Force is OKLA. STAT. tit. 21 § 844, which states “nothing contained in this act shall prohibit any parent, teacher or other person from using ordinary force as a means of discipline, including but not limited to spanking, switching or paddling.” Also, OKLA. STAT. tit. 21 § 643(4) states: “When committed by a parent or the authorized agent of any parent, or by any guardian, master or teacher, in the exercise of a lawful authority to restrain or correct such person's child, ward, apprentice or scholar, provided restraint or correction has been rendered necessary by the misconduct of such child, ward, apprentice or scholar, or by the child's refusal to obey the lawful command of such parent or authorized agent or guardian, master or teacher, and the force or violence used is reasonable in manner and moderate in degree.”
Jury Instruction on Ordinary Force
It is not child abuse for a parent/teacher/person to use reasonable and ordinary force to discipline a child, including, but not limited to, spanking, switching, or paddling, so long as the force is reasonable in manner and moderate in degree.
Oklahoma Jury Instruction #4-35B.
What the Skilled Lawyers at Cannon & Associates Can Do For You
Being charged with Child Abuse by more than Ordinary Force in Oklahoma is a serious matter. The Oklahoma criminal defense attorneys at Cannon & Associates are Fierce Advocates for Families and Freedom and will fight for you! At Cannon & Associates, we have extensive criminal defense experience, and will be with you every step of the way. We will take care to explain the issues and options to get you to your desired result and support you in this difficult time.
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