Pasadena Criminal Threats
The act of making criminal threats in Pasadena is a very serious offense that can carry substantial punishments. Even though no one is physically hurt in these cases, they are treated as violent crimes and handled accordingly. Although this crime used to be referred to as "terrorist threats," one does not need to be a terrorist in the traditional sense of the word to be prosecuted for this offense. Many times, the crime of criminal threats under California Penal Code Section 422 PC may be associated with domestic violence allegations or assault and battery cases in Pasadena.
To be found guilty of criminal threats in Pasadena, the following elements must be proven:
- The defendant intentionally threatened to kill or seriously hurt another person
- The defendant made the threat orally, in writing or via an electronic communication
- The defendant intended that his or her statement be interpreted as a threat.
- The threat was so clear, immediate and specific that the victim would reasonably believe it would be carried out.
- The threat caused the victim to fear for his or her safety or for the safety of his or her family
- AND this fear was reasonable under the circumstances.
Not all threats would be considered criminal under the statute. A person would have a legitimate defense against an allegation of Pasadena criminal threats where:
- The threat was ambiguous and not specific
- The person who received the "threat" could not have been placed in reasonable fear for his or her safety.
- The person who received the "threat" was not placed in fear.
- Any fear induced was fleeting
- The threat was not made orally, electronically or in writing.
The crime of criminal threats in Pasadena is a "wobbler" offense which means that prosecutors in the Pasadena Branch of the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office can file the case as a felony or refer the matter to the Pasadena City Attorney for misdemeanor filing. Prosecutors will typically review factors such as the circumstances and seriousness of the offense as well as the defendant's criminal history in determining whether to file felony or misdemeanor charges. If the prosecutor pursues felony charges, the defendant can face up to four years in prison. In addition, making criminal threats is a "strike" offense which can be used to enhance sentences on any future cases.
Because this is a crime that may not leave any physical evidence, this is an offense in which there are often False Accusations made by a "victim" in order to get a defendant in trouble. In these situations, an effective Pasadena criminal defense attorney can point out the inconsistencies in the accuser's statement and reveal any hidden motives that person may have had for making the false accusation.
If you or someone you know has been accused of or charged with criminal threats in Pasadena, it is critical that you consult with an effective and experienced Pasadena criminal defense attorney right away. Pasadena Criminal Defense Attorney Michael Kraut is a former Deputy District Attorney with over 14 years of prosecutorial experience, including an assignment as a Senior Trial Prosecutor at the Pasadena Courthouse. Mr. Kraut has established key relationships throughout the Pasadena legal and law enforcement community and is highly regarded as a fierce advocate who possesses a deep understanding of the criminal law. Mr. Kraut has handled serious felonies like criminal threats from both the prosecutorial and defense perspective and knows how to present these cases in the best light possible.
For more information about Pasadena criminal threats, and to schedule your free consultation, contact Pasadena Criminal Defense Attorney Michael Kraut at the Kraut Law Group located at 790 East Colorado Boulevard, 9th Floor, Pasadena, CA 91101. Mr. Kraut can be reached 24/7 at 888-334-6344 or 626-345-1899.