Is it a Crime to Point a Gun at a Person?

Is it a crime to point a gun at a person? Tempers run high these days and we often see stories in the media about confrontations between citizens which involve one party pointing a gun at the other. In Texas if a person points a gun at another person they can be charged with the felony offense of Aggravated Assault. It isn’t required that the person shoot the other individual.

Aggravated Assault is a serious offense and carries a penalty range from two to twenty years in prison. Texas is a state which has self defense laws which favor a citizen who is protecting themselves or a third party. These self defense laws can be used when defending a person who has been arrested because they produced a gun and pointed at another person during a confrontation. Threats as Justifiable Force under Section 9.03 of the Texas Penal Code sets out the criteria needed for this defense.

The first fact to consider is “ is use of force justified” under Texas Law. That means do the facts show a reasonable person in the defendants position feel it necessary to pull a gun. Under these circumstances if a defendant produces a weapon to threaten another person they can do so as long as long as their intent was limited to creating an apprehension that deadly force will be used if necessary.

So is it a crime to point a gun at a person? It can be, but under Texas law you may have a defense. Whether the defense is valid is all driven by the specific facts of each case and if you have an experience self defense attorney. who knows the law and knows how to present the defense. The police will almost always arrest a person who points a gun at another individual. Law enforcement officers have to make quick decisions on the street and probable cause to arrest is a very low burden. The defense for this accusation can be brought later by a criminal attorney at the Grand Jury or at trial.