Court: Part of Kansas criminal threat law unconstitutional

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TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) -

The Kansas Supreme Court has struck down part of a state law against making a criminal threat after concluding it violates free speech rights.

The court on Friday declared unconstitutional a provision of the law making it illegal to communicate a threat of violence with "reckless disregard" of the risk that it might cause fear.

The justices said that part of the law is so broad that it could affect the speech of political protesters and violates the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

The Supreme Court overturned criminal threat convictions in two cases.

One from Douglas County involved a man convicted of making a reckless criminal threat toward an acquaintance in a convenience store.

Another from Montgomery County involved man's threatening language toward his mother.

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