false alarm or report

False Alarm or Report | Fort Worth Criminal Defense

Making a false alarm or report is a crime in Texas. According to 42.06 of the Texas Penal Code, this offense is committed if a person knowingly initiates, communicates or circulates a report of a present, past or future bombing, fire, offense or other emergency that he or she knows is false or baseless and that would ordinarily:

(1) cause action by an official or volunteer agency organized to deal with emergencies;

(2) place a person in fear of imminent serious bodily injury; or

(3) prevents or interrupt the occupation of a building, room, place of assembly, place to which the public has access, or aircraft, automobile or other mode of conveyance.

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What is the punishment for making a false report or alarm?

The severity of the punishment for making a false report or alarm depends on where the false alarm is reported to have occurred, not the location of the actor. If the false report involves a public or private institution of higher education or involves a public primary or secondary school, public communications, public transportation, public water, gas or power supply or other public service, the offense is a state jail felony, punishable from six month to two years in a state jail facility and up to a $10,000 fine. 

State Jail Felonies

If the alarm or false report involves any other location, it is a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail and up to a $4,000 fine. For example, pulling a fire alarm in a high school or calling in a false bomb threat at a university would likely be punished as a state jail felony.

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If you or a loved one are facing a charge of making a false alarm or report, it's imperative that you contact a skilled defense attorney as soon as possible. Our team of former prosecutors and board certified attorneys can help. Call 817-203-2220 today for a complimentary strategy session. During this call we will: 

  • Discuss the facts of your case;
  • Discuss the legal issues involved, including the direct and collateral consequences of the allegation; and
  • Discuss the defenses that apply to your plan and in general terms discuss our approach to your case.

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Benson Varghese

Managing Partner at Varghese Summersett PLLC
Benson Varghese is the founder and Managing Partner of Varghese Summersett PLLC. He is a prolific writer and has authored hundreds of articles about criminal law in Texas and at the Federal level. His articles have been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Above the Law, and have been selected as Top Blogs by the State Bar of Texas. He was named the Young Lawyer of the Year in 2019 by the Tarrant County Bar Association. Benson led the firm to become one of the 500 fastest growing businesses in the United States by Inc 500 Magazine in 2018. In the same year, the firm was named the Best Law Firm in Fort Worth by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. The lawyers at Varghese Summersett PLLC exclusively handle criminal defense matters.
Benson Varghese
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