Threat to Commit Crime
- A sentence in jail for up to 6 months, and/or
- A fine up to $100, and/or
- A term of probation, and/or
- Suspended sentence.
- The defendant expressed an intent to injury the alleged victim and/or his or her property, now or in the future;
- The defendant intended that it to be conveyed to the alleged victim;
- The injury that was threatened, if carried out, would constitute a crime; and
- The defendant made the threat under circumstances which could have reasonably caused the alleged victim to fear that the defendant had both the intention and the ability to carry out the threat.
In order to threaten to commit a crime, the threat must be a true threat. Therefore, anyone who makes a threat in jest or a threat that is considered idle cannot be punished under this law. Yet, police officers and prosecutors like to move forward with cases against defendants with threats charges in Massachusetts even though the facts of certain cases suggest that the words used by the person did not amount to a threat, especially where the individual has not intention or ability to make good on a purported threat. On the other hand, in order to protect the safety of the public, true threats will not be considered protected speech under the Constitution. In Virginia v. Black, the Supreme Court defined true threats as "those statements where the speaker means to communicate a serious expression of an intent to commit an act of unlawful violence to a particular individual or group of individuals." The United States Supreme Court has held that true threats are not protected under the Constitution based on three justifications: preventing fear, preventing the disruption that follows from that fear, and diminishing the likelihood that the threatened violence will occur.
Criminal Threats Defense Lawyer in Boston, Massachusetts
When you face charges for criminal threats in Boston or anywhere else in Massachusetts, you want a lawyer who has the reputation and experience to provide you with the most aggressive and persuasive defense strategy. Criminal threats in Massachusetts are a serious crime and can, if convicted, result in a potential prison sentence; therefore it is vital that you immediately contact the Law Office of Patrick J. Murphy. We have the knowledge and criminal defense attorney experience in the greater Boston area that can help successfully defend you against charges of criminal threats. We can help craft a solid defense aimed at clearing you of the charges or minimizing your exposure to harsh penalties and jail time. Contact the Law Office of Patrick J. Murphy 24/7 today by calling 617-367-0450 or submitting our online contact form directly to Attorney Murphy.