What Is a Terroristic Threat Charge in Texas?

Earlier this year, a young man was alleged to have been involved in a massive outdoor fight in Brookwood Drive. When police were called to the scene, one of the officers used a pepper spray gun to try to control the crowd.

For that incident, he was charged with resisting arrest, which occurs when someone uses force against a person they know to be a police officer to prevent or obstruct the arrest of themselves or another. Now, he is accused of committing more offenses for his alleged part in a burglary. An affidavit filed to the court claims that the young man, along with two others, kicked in the door to an apartment and fired guns.

The apartment owner said that he heard a loud noise as he was leaving for work. When he looked to where the sound came from, he saw that his back door had been knocked in. He also reported that three men started shooting at him.

Two of the young men allegedly involved in the home invasion were found hiding behind a church and arrested. Police had to conduct interviews with witnesses and review home surveillance footage to apprehend the 18-year-old.

Texas Law on Terroristic Threats

All three men were charged with burglary, breaking and entering, and eight counts of terroristic threats.

According to Section 22.07 of the Texas Penal Code, a person commits a terroristic threat offense when they threaten violence against another person or property with the intent to:

  • Make an official or volunteer agency react to the threat;
  • Make someone else fear that they could be seriously injured;
  • Prevent others from using a public area;
  • Disrupt or interrupt public communications, transportations, or services; or
  • Make a group of people in a place fear serious bodily injury

Generally, terroristic threats are charged as Class B misdemeanors, which could result in up to 180 days in jail and up to $2,000 in fines. If the offense is committed against a peace officer or a member of the alleged offender’s family or household, the level increases to a Class A misdemeanor. In such situations, the penalties for a conviction include up to 1 year in jail and/or a fine of up to $4,000.

When the men allegedly began shooting, a couple of the rounds made their way into neighboring apartments. The men are facing eight counts of terroristic threats because there were other adults and children present when the alleged incident occurred, and each charge is for the people who were home at the time.

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