The Minnesota lawyers at Newmark Storms Law Office defend juvenile and adult clients against charges relating to terroristic threats.
Charges relating to terroristic threats often arise from situations where the offender had no idea the act was illegal. It’s often a fight that gets out of hand; and one comment meant to scare the other party is taken much more seriously. It could also arise from a teenager making a poor decision (such as calling in a school bomb threat to get out of a test) that he or she did not realize how serious the implications could be.
The Minnesota statute characterizes the crime of terroristic threats into three subdivisions:
Threatening Violence with the Intent to Terrorize
It is illegal to threaten to commit a violent crime with the purpose to terrorize another or even cause evacuation of a building, place of assembly, vehicle, facility of public transportation, or otherwise serious public inconvenience. The punishment for such a crime can be severe, including a $10,000 fine and a prison sentence of up to five years.
Communicating to Terrorize
This refers to those who purposefully terrorize another using explosives (or any other incendiary device). It does not matter if the explosives are in fact present, the terroristic nature still makes it illegal. The penalties for such a crime include up to three years in prison and up to $3,000 in fines.
Displaying a Replica Firearm
It is a crime to use a replica firearm in a threatening manner if the party causes (or attempts to cause) another person terror OR acts in reckless disregard of causing another person terror. In this case, replica firearms are considered any device or object that can reasonably appear to be a pistol, revolver, shotgun, rifle, machine gun, rocket launcher, etc. This can include devices only designed to fire blanks. It also includes BB guns. Penalties for displaying a replica firearm include a prison sentence of up to one year and up to $3,000 in fines.
While many of these charges stem from situations that just got a little out of hand, the repercussions can be immense. It’s important to find an attorney who can negotiate with prosecutors and who knows the legal system to mitigate any consequences and minimize the pain associated with terroristic threats.
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