hoax bombs

Hoax Bombs | Fort Worth Criminal Defense Attorney

Hoax Bombs in Texas

Even though hoax bombs cannot cause the type of damage of a real bomb, they are dangerous for other reasons. Namely, hoax bombs can instill fear and panic in people and cause emergency officials to expend time, money and manpower investigating and dispelling a perceived threat. As a result, hoax bombs are illegal in certain circumstances.

Under Texas Penal Code Section 46.08, a person commits an offense if they knowingly manufacture, sell, purchase, transport, or possesses a hoax bomb with intent to use the hoax bomb to:

(1)  make another believe that the hoax bomb is an explosive or incendiary device;  or

(2)  cause alarm or reaction of any type by an official of a public safety agency or volunteer agency organized to deal with emergencies.

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In other words, it’s illegal to make people believe a hoax bomb is real. Likewise, it is against the law to use a hoax bomb to cause alarm or reaction by members of public safety agencies, such as law enforcement, or a volunteer agency designed to deal with emergencies, such as the American Red Cross.

There are many ways to commit this offense. The most obvious is when a person knowingly manufactures a hoax bomb. Selling a hoax bomb, purchasing a hoax bomb, and transporting a hoax bomb with the intent of using it to make others believe it is a real bomb — even if the intent was never carried out — are also examples of ways a person could violate the statute. Finally, merely possessing a hoax bomb with the intent to either make others believe it is real or to cause a reaction of any kind by public safety and emergency officials, is illegal.

The punishment for Hoax Bombs in Texas

Using a hoax bomb is a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to a year in jail and $4,000 in fines.

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If you or a loved one is facing a charge of a hoax bomb in Texas, we can help. Call us at (817) 203-2220 for a complimentary strategy session. Our team of former prosecutors and Board Certified Criminal Lawyers have decades of experience and a proven track record of success. 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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