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Terroristic Threats Charges 2C:12-3

Terroristic Threats Lawyers in Mercer County

The State of New Jersey prosecutes threats of violence just as aggressively as they do actual acts of violence. There is a serious misconception in the public that if the threats were “just words” and “I didn’t actually mean it” that it is not illegal. That could not be any further from the truth. Terroristic threats is either a second or third degree felony offense in New Jersey. If convicted of terroristic threats, a Defendant could be facing upwards of ten (10) years in a state prison and a fine up to $150,000. On top of that, terroristic threats is one of the most common charges used to obtain a temporary restraining order in Mercer County.

Need Local Attorney for Terroristic Threat Charge in Trenton?

Since the offense of terroristic threats could be considered an act of domestic violence, the new bail reforms which started in January of 2017 could have a significant effect on a Defendant’s pretrial release. In fact, depending on how the detention hearing goes, a Defendant could be held in the Mercer County jail without bail pending trial. If you or a loved one has been charged with terroristic threats, stalking, harassment, aggravated assault, trespassing, unlawful possession of a weapon or served with a temporary restraining order in Mercer County, we can help. The Law Offices of Proetta & Oliver has extensive experience representing clients charged with this type of offense. As you will see below, this is a very serious offense, one that if not handled properly could land a Defendant behind bars for years. Our firm is solely dedicated to defending those accused of crimes in towns throughout Mercer County. If you would like to set up a free consultation with us then please contact us directly at (609) 789-0779. We are available around the clock to help assist in any way possible. We routinely appear in Courts throughout the Mercer County, including courts like Hamilton Municipal Court, the Lawrenceville Municipal Court, the Robbinsville Municipal Court, the Hightstown Municipal Court, the Trenton Municipal Court, the Hopewell Municipal Court, and Mercer County Superior Court. Here is the breakdown in the difference between a second and third degree felony.

Terroristic Threats Attorneys in Princeton NJ

N.J.S.A. 2C:12-3 Charges in New Jersey

N.J.S.A. 2C:12-3 is the governing state in New Jersey for terroristic threats. There are two separate sections in which a Defendant could find themselves being charged under. N.J.S.A. 2C:12-3a covers situations where a Defendant is alleged to have committed a threat of violence. N.J.S.A. 2C:12-3b covers situations where a Defendant is alleged to have threatened to kill another.  In order to be convicted of N.J.S.A. 2C:12-3a, the State must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that:

  • The Defendant threatened to commit a crime of violence on another with the purpose to;
    • Terrorize the victim; or
    • To cause an evacuation of a building; or
    • To cause a serious public inconvenience.

A key angle to attack for an experienced criminal defense attorney could be the underlying purpose of the “threat” which is alleged to have been made.

In order to be convicted of N.J.S.A. 2C:12-3b, the State must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that:

  • That the Defendant threatened to kill the victim;
  • That the threat was made with the purpose to put the victim in imminent fear of death; &
  • The the threat was made under circumstances which reasonably caused the person to believe that the threat was likely to be carried out.

The key under this section is “imminent fear of death” this is where an experienced criminal defense attorney can attack the prosecution’s proofs. If you would like to set up a free initial consultation today with us then please contact us directly at (609) 789-0799.

What is the Sentence for Terroristic Threats in NJ?

Terroristic threats is a third degree felony offense in New Jersey unless the offense occurred during during a declared period of national or state emergency, then it will be a second degree felony. Here is a breakdown between the potential penalties that one faces if convicted of a second or third degree felony offense in New Jersey.

2nd Degree Felony:

  • 5 to 10 Years in a State Prison;
  • Fine up to $150,000;
  • A Felony Criminal Record.

3rd Degree Felony:

  • 3 to 5 Years in a State Prison;
  • Fine up to $15,000;
  • A Felony Criminal Record.

With that being said, depending on Defendant’s prior record and the facts surrounding the incident, an experienced criminal defense attorney may be able to get the Defendant into the Pretrial Intervention Program (PTI). PTI is a diversionary program in New Jersey whereby if the Defendant completes the program without violating the terms the pending charges will be outright dismissed.

Ewing NJ Terroristic Threats Defense Attorneys

As you can see from reading above, this is a very serious offense and one that requires the assistance of an experienced criminal defense attorney. The attorneys at Proetta & Oliver have the experience and skill set required to protect your freedom. Our office routinely represents clients charged with terroristic threats, stalking, eluding, simple assault, harassment, false imprisonment and disorderly conduct. If you have been charged with one of these offenses or any offense for that matter in towns like Hamilton, Lawrenceville, Robbinsville, Trenton, Ewing, Hightstown, West Windsor and Ewing, we can help. If you would like to come into our office of a free face to face consultation with Mr. Oliver or any of the other attorneys on staff then please contact us directly at (609) 789-0779. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact us.