The Vermont Statutes Online
§ 1304. Cruelty to a child
(a) A person over 16 years of age, having the custody, charge, or care of a child, who willfully assaults, ill treats, neglects, or abandons or exposes such child, or causes or procures such child to be assaulted, ill-treated, neglected, abandoned, or exposed, in a manner to cause such child unnecessary suffering, or to endanger his or her health, shall be imprisoned not more than two years or fined not more than $500.00, or both.
(b)(1) If the child suffers death, or serious bodily injury as defined in subdivision 1021(2) of this title, or is subjected to sexual conduct as defined in subdivision 2821(2) of this title, the person shall be imprisoned not more than ten years or fined not more than $20,000.00, or both.
(2) It shall be an affirmative defense to a charge under this subsection (b), if proven by a preponderance of the evidence, that the defendant engaged in the conduct set forth in subsection (a) of this section because of a reasonable fear that he or she or another person would suffer death, bodily injury, or serious bodily injury as defined in section 1021 of this title, or sexual assault in violation of chapter 72 of this title.
(c) The provisions of this section do not limit or restrict the prosecution for other offenses arising out of the same conduct, nor shall it limit or restrict defenses available under common law. (Amended 1971, No. 199 (Adj. Sess.), § 15; 2015, No. 60, § 25.)