Terroristic Threat Defense
If you’ve just been arrested for terroristic threat in Travis County, you probably have a thousand questions racing through your mind. What can I do now? What is the process? Will I go back to jail?
You need experienced Austin attorneys who understand the Travis County court system inside and out. We zealously represent your rights throughout this process and answer all the questions you have along the way.
Our team has a combined 30+ years of experience helping people charged with terroristic threat in Austin. We will tell you what to expect and how to improve the chances of getting the best result. Having experienced attorneys can make the difference between getting your case dismissed or being convicted.
What is a Terroristic Threat in Texas?
The offense of terroristic threatening is straightforward. Generally, one can be charged with this if they issue a violent threat with the intention of carrying it out. What distinguishes terroristic threatening from a mere assault charge is the specific intent behind it.
In Texas, making a threat of violence towards an individual or property can lead to a charge of terroristic threat. However to be charged with a terroristic threat, the threat must come with the criminal intent to either act upon it or instill genuine fear in someone that you might.
The current Texas law defines the offense of Terroristic Threat in Penal Code Section §22.07 as:
(a) A person commits an offense if he threatens to commit any offense involving violence to any person or property with intent to:
(1) cause a reaction of any type to his threat by an official or volunteer agency organized to deal with emergencies;
(2) place any person in fear of imminent serious bodily injury;
(3) prevent or interrupt the occupation or use of a building, room, place of assembly, place to which the public has access, place of employment or occupation, aircraft, automobile, or other form of conveyance, or other public place;
(4) cause impairment or interruption of public communications, public transportation, public water, gas, or power supply or other public service;
(5) place the public or a substantial group of the public in fear of serious bodily injury; or
(6) influence the conduct or activities of a branch or agency of the federal government, the state, or a political subdivision of the state.
What is the punishment for Terroristic Threats?
The punishment for making a terroristic threat in Texas varies depending on the specifics of the situation and the group targeted. Generally, a terroristic threat is a Class B misdemeanor, which can result in:
A fine of up to $2,000, Up to 180 days in county jail, Or both.
However, the charge can be enhanced in certain circumstances:
If the threat is against a family or household member or involves domestic violence, it can be elevated to a Class A misdemeanor, which can lead to a fine of up to $4,000 and/or up to one year in county jail.
If the threat causes a financial loss of $1,500 or more to the entity evacuating its place of assembly, a place where people are employed, or a facility of public transportation, it's deemed a state jail felony. Penalties can include 180 days to 2 years in state jail and a fine of up to $10,000.
If the threat is made against a peace officer or judge with the intention of influencing their actions or decisions, it becomes a third-degree felony. This can result in a prison term of 2 to 10 years and a fine of up to $10,000.
WHEN SHOULD I HIRE AN ATTORNEY?
Immediately. An attorney should be working on your case right away. We want to talk to witnesses as soon as possible and protect any evidence that will help the case. Hiring an attorney is also a good way to alleviate the stress and anxiety that comes with being arrested.
CAN A Terroristic threat CHARGE BE DISMISSED?
Yes, but it depends on the circumstances of the arrest and what you are willing to do while the case is pending. We have negotiated hundreds of dismissals in Travis County using our knowledge and experience of what works in Austin. In order to help us get the best result, we will create a customized Action Plan for you.
ONE OF MY FRIENDS/FAMILY WAS ARRESTED FOR Terroristic threat. WILL THEY GET OUT OF JAIL AUTOMATICALLY?
No. They must qualify for a personal bond. And even if they do qualify, it can take 24 hours or more to be released. We can speed up the process significantly. And trust us, everyone wants out of jail as soon as possible. HERE IS MORE INFO ON JAIL RELEASES.