Connecticut Threatening Lawyer
While many domestic violence arrests arise from physical altercations and fights, there are times when police can actually arrest someone for words—not conduct—especially when you use words which communicate physically threatening conduct. As many Connecticut threatening lawyers have observed, digital communications are beginning to eclipse the traditional spoken word, and this evolution in communication among family members is spilling into criminal courtrooms.
As a result, arrests for Threatening in the Second Degree are increasing in frequency, as spouses and loved ones are carrying their real-time fights into the virtual world, sending physically threatening messages via text message, email, Facebook, Instagram, and other social media. And when the threatening messages are physically threatening, specific, and immediate in timing, that’s when you can get arrested in for Threatening in the Second Degree, regardless of any First Amendment defenses.
What many judges and prosecutors don’t realize is that there is usually another side to the story of domestic violence Threatening in the Second Degree arrests. Domestic violence assault attorneys routinely present judges and prosecutors with additional evidence that explains how a heated argument between loved ones can escalate to such an alarming level, proving that there was no actual intent to cause the recipient fear of imminent physical harm, proving that the argument and heated words went both ways.
Therefore, if you have been arrested in Connecticut for Threatening in the Second Degree per CGS 53a-62, then contact our team to try to get your arrest dismissed as quickly and cost-effectively as possible.
What Is Threatening in the Second Degree?
As an attorney can attest, Second Degree Threatening is the most frequently charged Threatening crime in Connecticut for domestic violence disputes. The law is written up in C.G.S. 53a-62, and is classified as a Class A misdemeanor, carrying a penalty of up to a year in prison and $2,000 in fines.
You can be found guilty of Threatening in the Second Degree in three different scenarios: (1) if you physically threaten someone with the intention of causing that person to fear imminent physical injury, (2) if you intentionally threaten a violent crime against a person, such as threatening to strangle or kill them, or (3) if, with reckless disregard for the risk of causing someone terror, you threaten a violent crime against that person.
(1) if you physically threaten someone with the intention of causing that person to fear imminent physical injury, (2) if you intentionally threaten a violent crime against a person, such as threatening to strangle or kill them, or (3) if, with reckless disregard for the risk of causing someone terror, you threaten a violent crime against that person.
(2) if you intentionally threaten a violent crime against a person, such as threatening to strangle or kill them, or (3) if, with reckless disregard for the risk of causing someone terror, you threaten a violent crime against that person.
(3) if, with reckless disregard for the risk of causing someone terror, you threaten a violent crime against that person.
What Can I Expect In Court?
Your first day of court for your arrest for Threatening in the Second Degree involves several important events. As with any domestic violence arrest, you will be required to appear at your first court date, called the “arraignment,” on the very next business day morning. Before your arraignment for a domestic violence arrest, you will be ordered to meet with a family relations officer who will ask you questions concerning the arrest.
A family relations officer will then conduct a risk assessment and make recommendations to the judge concerning your case and a potential Connecticut restraining or protective order. As your lawyer may advise, you should never step into a meeting with a family relations officer without thorough preparation by your threatening attorney in Connecticut. These family relations officers work for the judicial branch and will communicate anything alarming you say during this interview to the judge and prosecutor.
What Can a Restraining Order Restrict?
After your restraining order interview, you will then be required to attend a protective or restraining order hearing, during which the judge will likely issue a criminal protective order against you.
This domestic violence restraining order can restrict your contact with the alleged victim in one of three ways:
(1) it can place a complete ban on your contact with the victim (called a “full no contact” order);
(2) it can prevent you from entering the victim’s home but permit you to have contact with the victim (called a “full” or “residential stay-away” order); or
(3) it can merely prohibit any further threatening while allowing contact and entry into the victim’s home (called a “partial” or “limited” protective order). Once the order is issued, you are required to strictly comply with it. Even a technical violation can get you arrested for Violating a Criminal Protective Order, which is a Class D felony in Connecticut, carrying up to 5 years in prison.
Can I Fight Against The Charges?
Fighting your arrest for Threatening in the Second Degree requires your Connecticut threatening attorney to carefully review police reports, witness statements, digital surveillance, and other forensic data such as text messages, emails and social media. Don’t forget—police are in the business of making arrests, so don’t expect them to thoroughly investigate evidence that is going to clear you. That usually becomes the responsibility for your lawyer.
Another approach to consider in some sensitive Connecticut domestic violence cases is accepting responsibility without pleading guilty to your Connecticut arrest for Threatening in the Second Degree. Basically, you and your lawyer acknowledge that there may be some family tension, but you do not go so far as to plead guilty to your Connecticut arrest for Threatening in the Second Degree under CGS 53a-62. In these types of cases, your attorney needs to know how to work collaboratively with the most highly regarded and respected social workers, counselors, psychologists, therapists, and victim attorneys in your area.
Schedule a Consultation with a Connecticut Threatening Attorney Today
When fighting Connecticut Threatening in the Second Degree arrests, your attorney must assess whether the words spoken by you are protected under your state and federal constitutional First Amendment rights to free speech. To be criminal, “threatening” language must be spoken in with the intention to instill fear. If your words fall short of this, then your lawyer should bring this to the attention of the prosecutor and or the judge, when negotiating your charges and the parameters of your protective order. Call today to speak with a Connecticut threatening lawyer.