Have you been arrested on criminal threats charges in West Chester, Pennsylvania? You could be facing a felony conviction that can significantly impact your life. Law enforcement officials treat criminal threats seriously, and the prosecution has real discretion in the charges and cases it pursues.
With that much lined up against you, you’ll need a strong West Chester criminal threats lawyer in your corner. The criminal defense attorneys with DiCindio Law, LLC, can ensure your best defense is brought forward. Our lead attorney is a former Chester County prosecutor, which means he knows how the other side operates; he uses that knowledge to the benefit of his clients on a daily basis.
How DiCindio Law, LLC, Can Help if You Are Facing Criminal Threats Charges in West Chester
Criminal threats charges can result in severe penalties even if you don’t actually carry out the crime. In this day and age, threats to cause injury or harm to someone else are taken at face value and can quickly lead to an arrest.
The West Chester criminal defense attorneys with DiCindio Law, LLC, are here to listen to your side of the story with a sympathetic ear. From there, we’ll work to craft an effective defense tailored to the facts of your case. We’re award-winning attorneys who have been recognized as Super Lawyers, Rising Stars, and Top 10 Under 40 by prominent legal organizations. Some of the ways our legal team can help with your case include:
- Investigating your case to uncover any exculpatory evidence and to analyze the merits of the prosecution’s case
- Handling all communications and negotiations with the prosecution, with the goal of having your charges reduced or dismissed
- Apprising you of your legal options as your case progresses
- Bringing your case before a Chester County jury at trial, if need be
Ready to get started? Call or contact our law firm today in West Chester, PA, for more information if you’ve been charged with a crime like criminal threats.
Criminal Threats Law in Pennsylvania
Criminal threats are covered under Title 18 Section 2706 of the Pennsylvania Code. Officially referred to as “terroristic threats” under the statute, this section makes it illegal to communicate, whether directly or indirectly, a threat to do one of the following:
- Commit any crime of violence with the intent to terrorize another person
- Cause a building, place of assembly, or facility of public transportation to be evacuated
- Otherwise cause serious public inconvenience, or cause terror or serious public inconvenience with reckless disregard of the risk of such terror or inconvenience
The accused need only satisfy one of the above bullet points in order to be charged with terroristic threats under Section 2706. The statute also defines “communicate” to include in person, written, or electronic communications.
By default, violating this statute will result in a first-degree misdemeanor charge. However, if your charge falls under the second category listed above and the occupants of the building in question were diverted from their customary operations, it can be charged as a third-degree felony instead.
What Are the Penalties for a Criminal Threats Conviction in West Chester, Pennsylvania?
If you are convicted of first-degree misdemeanor terroristic threats in West Chester, the penalties you could face under Pennsylvania law include:
- A fine of between $1,500 to $10,000
- Up to five years of imprisonment
- Restitution if applicable
If you are convicted of third-degree felony terroristic threats, your penalties could be:
- A fine of between $2,500 to $15,000
- Up to seven years of imprisonment
- Restitution if applicable
Restitution for these charges could be, for example, paying for the costs of evacuation and fire and police response. And in certain cases, probation may be available instead of prison time.
In addition to these penalties imposed by the criminal justice system, there are collateral consequences you could face if convicted. A criminal record by itself can carry consequences. For instance, a felony conviction could make it much more difficult to obtain housing or employment. You could also face immigration issues or difficulty legally obtaining and owning a firearm if applicable.
What Defenses Can Be Raised if I’ve Been Accused of Criminal Threats in Pennsylvania?
Fortunately, there are many potential defenses available to you if you’ve been accused of criminal threats in West Chester, Pennsylvania. These defenses include:
- The prosecution lacks enough evidence to support every element of your charges beyond a reasonable doubt
- Your constitutional rights were violated
- The communication in question was too vague to be considered a threat
- You are outright innocent, verifiable with exculpatory evidence
- You did not intend to harm anyone
The best defenses for your case will depend on the facts and circumstances. Our legal team will thoroughly investigate and analyze your case and the prosecution’s evidence against you in order to determine the best course of action.
Reach Out for a Free Consultation With a West Chester Criminal Threats Lawyer
Criminal threats charges are nothing to scoff at, especially in the modern era where electronic communications are so prevalent. Your future could be on the line, especially if you’ve been charged with a felony.
DiCindio Law, LLC, has the knowledge and experience necessary to assist with your case when you’re up against criminal charges. Our team has more than 10 years of experience practicing law, and we’re well-regarded in the West Chester legal community.
Call today to schedule a free consultation and discuss your criminal case with an experienced West Chester criminal threats lawyer.