Greensboro, NC asked in Personal Injury for Virginia

Q: Roommate said if i ever dump his alcohol again he will poison my drink

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1 Lawyer Answer
Jay Braddock Jackson
Jay Braddock Jackson
  • Fredericksburg, VA
  • Licensed in Virginia

A: If you are roommates at a college or university, you should take a look at the school’s Honor Code, if one exists and some other type of “Code of Conduct,” if it exists, to see what repercussions there may be for your roommate for making the threat. Then simply be guided by that Code as to what it is you might do.

Criminally, if the activity you have described occurred in Virginia, according to Virginia Code §18.2-54.2, actually putting poison in food or drink is considered a Class 3 Felony and is punishable by a term of imprisonment of not less than five years nor more than 20 years and a fine of up to $ 100,000. If your roommate made his/her threat in writing, then he (or she) would be subject to criminal punishment for the threat alone under § 18.2-60(A). Written Threats of death or bodily injury to a person is punishable as a Class 6 Felony, which carries a penalty of a term of imprisonment of up to five years, or jail for up 12 months and/or a fine of up to $ 2,500. These are the criminal penalties of your roommate’s potential actions. The threat would need to be in writing, presumably to produce solid evidence of the threat. If the activity occurred in North Carolina, you should consult an attorney in that state.

From a civil perspective, your ability to recover from your roommate for damages caused as a result of the threat would be dependent on damages as well as your ability to prove that your roommate actually made the threat. If you were caused to seek medical or psychiatric care, you may have a cause of action for infliction of emotional distress. You should discuss the actual facts of your case with a personal injury attorney in your area, as cases such as this are very fact dependent.

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