Parker County bomb hoax to test new Texas terrorism law

A bomb hoax in Parker County is believed to be the first test of new state terrorism laws.

Two men, Parker Whitworth and Kristopher Cloud, were indicted on charges of terrorism and planting a hoax bomb.

A worker at the Parker County District Court found the device outside the building in Weatherford this April.

It was a locked plastic case that was spray-painted white with caution tape on it and an antenna sticking out.

A bomb squad determined there was nothing dangerous in it.

Video from the courthouse showed a male getting out of an SUV and placing the package outside the door.

The sheriff's office says public tips led to the suspects.

The tipster told investigators that Whitworth had a court date scheduled for the day and was attempting to disrupt proceedings.

A search of Cloud's residence found caution tape, a cap to a white spray paint can and a metal label consistent with the missing label on the hoax bomb, according to documents.

The charges are felonies under an expansion of state terrorism laws that took effect last year.

The law give police the ability to charge people with terrorism if they commit certain offenses with the intent to intimidate the public or influence public policy or the government.

The most serious charge carries a maximum of 20 years in prison.