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House of Representatives
Session of 2017 - 2018 Regular Session


Posted: December 7, 2016 09:59 AM
From: Representative Rob W. Kauffman
To: All House members
Subject: Endangering A Child - Former House Bill 74
Section 4304 of the Crimes Code establishes the crime of Endangering the Welfare of a Child (EWOC). Currently, the grading of the offense makes no distinction between an offender who places a very young child at risk versus an older child, or the degree of harm that could have resulted from the conduct. It simply prohibits a parent or guardian, or person supervising the welfare of a child under 18 years of age, from placing a child at risk of harm, grading it as a misdemeanor of the third degree unless part of a course of conduct in which case it is a felony of the third degree.

I will soon be re-introducing legislation which will reflect the degree of risk and the age of the child victim in the grading. EWOC would constitute a felony of the third degree if the conduct placed the child at risk of death or serious bodily injury, and a felony of the second degree if it was part of a continuous course of conduct. Also, the grading would be increased one level if the child is under the age of 6 years old.

I believe this legislation is an important step that will help us better protect the most vulnerable children from the most serious forms of harm. Please consider joining me in co-sponsorship of this legislation.

Previous Cosponsors: Bishop, Baker, Cohen, Stephens, Rapp, Watson, McNeill, Major, Murt, Millard, Bizzarro, D. Costa, Kortz, Jozwiak and Miccarelli

Introduced as HB217