Los Angeles Criminal Threats
The Serious Consequences of Criminal Threats in Los Angeles
When exercising your “freedom of speech” rights, you have to be aware that your words will be under scrutiny. Once you cross the line and threaten someone, the law will come down heavily on you. You could end up with heavy fines, and more seriously, you could be facing jail time. The reputation damage alone could be irreversible, highlighting the importance of getting a Los Angeles criminal attorney to defend you in your case.
What is a Criminal Threat?
A criminal threat is any statement made to another person that implies the infliction of harm on that person. The message could be either direct or indirect and could come through various means: verbally, texted, emailed, or online messaging. For instance, a criminal threat can be an ex-partner stating that they will kill the other partner, a text message telling someone to “watch their back,” or a patron telling a cashier that he will “see him in the parking lot.”
Criminal threats are complex crimes that require the prosecution to bear the burden of proving the defendant’s intent to harm the recipient of the threat. Additionally, the prosecution must prove that the victim was genuinely fearful and felt as if their life was in danger.
Penalties for Criminal Threats
Courts prosecute criminal threats as either misdemeanors or felonies. A misdemeanor conviction may lead to a jail sentence of up to one year, whereas a felony conviction can result in up to four years in prison. If a weapon was involved in the threat, the court could impose an additional year of penalty.
Defenses for Criminal Threats
There are several defense options available for people charged with criminal threats. First, one can argue that they did not intend for the threat to be taken seriously, and the recipient took it to heart. Secondly, the defendant could argue that the victim was not genuinely afraid. Thirdly, one can argue that they did not make the declaration at all.
It’s the prosecution’s burden of proof to provide that the person committed the alleged offense. Where a case looks like it has no substance, a judge would likely dismiss it.
How an Attorney Can Help
If you find yourself charged with a criminal threat, it’s prudent to consult a Los Angeles attorney before making any statement. A criminal attorney can assess the evidence provided and advise you accordingly. They will give you an honest opinion about your case and assist you in developing a strong defense strategy.
The attorneys of our Los Angeles firm have years of experience and have had several positive case outcomes. We can help you secure your freedom and safeguard your reputation. Bring your criminal threat citation to us, and we’ll fight to protect your rights and your reputation.
Schedule a Consultation Today
You can contact our firm by phone or online to schedule a meeting with a reputable lawyer. You can expect an honest case evaluation before any legal representation. If we believe that we can help you, we will work with you to develop an effective case strategy.
Don’t take a criminal threat charge lightly, given its potential impact on your life. Get in touch with us today to secure your freedom and safeguard your future.
Table 1: Penalties for Criminal Threats
|Offense||Jail Time||Possible Penalty Enhancement|
|Misdemeanor||Up to one year||N/A|
|Felony||Up to four years||Additional year of penalty if a weapon was involved|
Table 2: Defenses for Criminal Threats
|1.||You did not have any intention of being taken seriously|
|2.||The alleged victim was not genuinely afraid|
|3.||You did not make any declaration|
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