Released patient, Ivan Boyd, made threats to other patients and occupants of Emory Decatur Hospital over the weekend. He called 911, according to reports, and told the dispatcher that he would shoot anyone who came near him.
After a 3-hour SWAT lockdown, officers found Boyd unresponsive in the back of a truck on the property. Boyd is currently undergoing medical evaluations. Although it is currently unknown if Boyd is facing any charges, as a Georgia Criminal Defense Attorney, I will outline one of the offenses he may end up being charged with.
Terroristic Threats in Georgia
The Georgia Code defines the criminal offense of terroristic threats in Georgia as:
A person commits the offense of a terroristic threat when he or she threatens to:
- Commit any crime of violence;
- Release any hazardous substance; or
- Burn or damage property.
The terroristic threat shall be made:
- With the purpose of terrorizing another;
- With the purpose of causing the evacuation of a building, place of assembly, or facility of public transportation;
- With the purpose of otherwise causing serious public inconvenience; or
- In reckless disregard of the risk of causing the terror, evacuation, or inconvenience. O.C.G.A. §16-11-37.
The majority of the time, a conviction for terroristic threats will be punished as a misdemeanor. The penalty for misdemeanor terroristic threats can include up to one year in jail or up to $1,000 in fines, or both.
However, if the threat suggested the death of the threatened individual, a conviction for terroristic threats will be punished as a felony. The penalty for felony terroristic threats can include up to $1,000 in fines, a prison term between one and five years, or both.
As a Georgia Criminal Defense Lawyer, I'd like to point out that there are several different Georgia Criminal Defenses that can apply to a wrongful accusation or arrest for terroristic threats. These defenses can include that the threat was not made for the purpose of terrorizing the victim or the testimony around the threats is uncorroborated.
If you or a loved one has been arrested, contact us today. Consult with one of our attorneys in order to determine what the best plan is for your case.