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Los Angeles Criminal Threats Lawyers

Criminal Threats Lawyers
In Los Angeles and California as a whole, under Penal Code Section 422, criminal threats is a crime that often associates with domestic violence. However, it can also be applied to a variety of situations. Criminal threats was once known as terroristic threats. A person can be charged with the crime and subsequently convicted if the prosecution can successfully prove all the elements of the case. As a result, it’s essential to retain an experienced criminal threats lawyer if you’re facing these charges.

It’s important to note that in spite of the First Amendment protecting the rights of freedom of speech, that doesn’t apply to criminal threats. You are not legally able to issue threats of violence to other people that place them in fear for their safety. At the same time, you can be charged with criminal threats even if you don’t make direct threats to a person. It can include the individual’s family members or a third party as long as the intent was for those threats to be relayed to the victim. For example, if an estranged husband visits his wife’s parents’ home and tells them to inform her that he’s looking for her and will make her sorry she left him, the man can be charged with the crime.

What Should You Do if You’re Arrested for Criminal Threats?

The first thing you should do if you’re arrested on charges of criminal threats is to simply remain silent. Do not offer any information to the police. Staying silent is in your best interest because you cannot incriminate yourself if you don’t talk. Secondly, you should immediately contact a criminal threats lawyer who can fight to protect your rights and build a strong case for you. It’s the best chance you have at getting a positive outcome in your case. Let your attorney handle everything for you and keep silent until you have had your consultation with them.

What is the Legal Definition of Criminal Threats in California?

As per California’s Penal Code Section 422, criminal threats is defined as an offense that is willfully made when a person issues threats to someone or those close to a person and that will result in serious bodily injury or death to them or another individual. Even if the person making the threats doesn’t truly mean it, if the victim or people close to the victim believe they were serious, they can still be charged with the crime of criminal threats.

As long as the victim is put in reasonable fear of their safety or that of their immediate family members, the individual making the threats can be arrested and charged with criminal threats. The threat can be made in a variety of ways: verbally, written or through an electronic device.

Additionally, the threat doesn’t have to be specific in nature; as long as the threat is made and it puts fear of serious injury or death into a person, the individual can still be charged with criminal threats and potentially convicted. The victim’s immediate family can include a spouse, child or parent. The electronic device through which the threat was made can be a phone, computer, tablet or even a fax machine.

What are the Elements of Criminal Threats?

The prosecution can only prove that a defendant is guilty of criminal threats if there are certain elements in place. In order to secure a conviction against a defendant, the prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the following elements were in place:

• The defendant willfully made threats to another person that they would cause serious bodily injury or death to them
• The threats the defendant made to the victim were verbal, in writing or through electronic means
• The defendant’s threats were intended for the victim to believe they were threats
• The defendant’s threat was perceived to be immediate and specific by the defendant and indicated that they would be carried out
• The defendant’s threat caused the victim to fear for their safety or for that of their immediate family members

What are the Penalties for Criminal Threats in California?

As per California law, criminal threats is a crime that is considered a wobbler, which means it can be classified as a misdemeanor or felony depending on the circumstances of the case. If the defendant has a prior criminal history, that can also impact whether the crime is charged as a misdemeanor or felony. If the individual is convicted of a misdemeanor, they can face a maximum of one year in jail and a fine of $1,000. However, for a felony conviction, the penalties can include a maximum of three years in state prison and a maximum fine of $10,000.

If a dangerous weapon was used during the commission of the crime, the individual can face an additional year in prison. A felony conviction for criminal threats is also counted as a strike per the state’s three-strikes law.

Other penalties a person can face include deportation for an undocumented immigrant and losing professional licenses held.

What are the Possible Defenses for Criminal Threats?

There are many possible defenses for a charge of criminal threats. The defense attorney can use one of the following most common:

Vague threat: The defense attorney can argue that it was a vague threat and not specific. This can cast reasonable doubt.
Victim’s fear wasn’t reasonable: Another defense is to argue that the victim’s fear wasn’t reasonable, such as an innocent comment made during an argument.
False accusation: Another possible defense is to argue that there was a false accusation. This commonly occurs during divorce proceedings or child custody battles.

No matter what, if you face criminal threat charges, you need to immediately speak with a criminal defense lawyer. The charges might just be dismissed with the right defense in place.


Charle Butler
Charle Butler
2021-03-12
Verified
I was hesitant to hire the Spodek Law Group. I read reviews and knew they have a great reputation. However, I thought I would spend money and not see or speak to my attorney. From the beginning to end of my case Todd and the entire staff were available and willing to help. We worked towards and end result that was way above my expectation and Todd delivered. I am forever grateful for patience and long days and night spent working on my case. Thanks Todd and the entire team!
Mesonista parsons
Mesonista parsons
2021-03-05
Verified
My attorney at Spodek was Abigail. She was very knowledgeable and helpful with all my questions and concerns, as well as responsive. Her fees are affordable and Abigail took the time to make sure I understood everything relating to my case. I highly recommend Abigail and will request her services in the future.
debabrata chakraborty
debabrata chakraborty
2021-03-03
Verified
Todd A Spodek is the experienced and best criminal lawyer at USA. He is very professional and always respond on time. Alex also very cooperative and always help me. They took care me and my problem like family member. I am 100% satisfied for their professional service. My result was unexpected and amazing. They dismissed my case. I am really grateful to them. I will recommend you to go there if you want to solve your problem. I wish all the best for them.
Asata Hendricks
Asata Hendricks
2021-03-02
Verified
Truly appreciate the work the guys did!. Exceptional team & I know they care about each and everyone of their clients. I am super thankful to be referred to Spodek Law Group and I am grateful Todd & Alex were able to work diligently to achieve an outcome I am pleased with. Despite COVID they stayed on top of things and kept me informed every step of the way. Very thankful.
Mike Moroff
Mike Moroff
2021-02-26
Verified
I'm very satisfied with the services rendered by Todd, Alex and Mary Lou. I whole heartedly recommend Spodek Law Group . I've worked with and have retained other attorneys in the past with Todd's firm being the cream of the crop for many reasons. A very serious legal matter was resolved after a year's hard work and effort. Todd expertly guided me through the process and was able to navigate and make the good journey bearable as well as successful. Mary Lou initially provided excellent assistance before referring my case to Todd. Alex's support was effective and timely. The customer portal (MyCase) is an invaluable communication tool that also kept track of my case. Various aspects of my case were explained and there were several options provided but I made the final decision of how the case would be handled. The legal fee was reasonable considering the effort and amount of work plus it was a flat fee regardless of the length of time required to conclude my case. Todd made himself available to me and we had many scheduled meetings to go over the progress and to discuss the next steps. I felt more confident after many discussions with him. You will not go wrong choosing Spodek Law Group for legal matters.
Josh Katz
Josh Katz
2021-02-24
Verified
Being that it was the first time that I was in need of an attorney, I was afraid and hesitant and knew I needed the absolute best. It is beyond understood why Spodek Law Group has a reputation of being the top, if not the best law firm in New York. Alex and Abigail were there every step of the way even at the most unconvenient hours. I could not have asked for more. They are extremely good at what they do and they delivered much much more than just winning my case. A big thank you to Alex and Abigail for all the guidance and counseling and their upmost loyal support that extended far more than just legally. If you need the absolute best than don't hesitate to hire Spodek Law Firm.
L.C.
L.C.
2021-02-24
Verified
I cannot tell you how thankful I am to Todd and Alex for their hard work and dedication to my case. I had never been in any trouble before but I had an unfortunate event occur and in the midst of COVID-19 at that therefore I knew I needed a team that was dedicated to my success. Today- my case has been finalized and I’m walking away with no record and can continue life as a mother and a Grad student worry free. I cannot express enough gratitude for their assistance.
AnnMarie Soliman
AnnMarie Soliman
2021-02-23
Verified
I received a summons and called Spodek law group for a free consultation. Alex took my call and was very quick and responsive. He was available anytime through multiple platforms and very reassuring when needed. They are extremely organized and thorough. They got my case dismissed! I’m very grateful. Thank you Alex and Todd!

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"Spodek Law Group have offered me excellent support and advice thru a very difficult time. I feel I've dealt with someone who truly cares and wants the best outcome for you and yours. I'm extremely grateful for all the help Spodek Law Group has offered me. I can't recommend them..."

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