February 28, 2011

Fake Koch is a Wisconsin felon: law prof

Via Legal Insurrection. The money parenthetical:
(I do think the section of the law as to harming reputation has unanswered First Amendment issues which were not addressed by the [State v. Baron] case.)
Translation: The statute is unconstitutional as applied to fake Koch.*

It takes a special brand of wingnuttery to suggest a guy who said "Scott! David Koch" in Buffalo, NY, committed a Wisconsin felony.

Maybe Prof. Jacobson doesn't know political lying is protected here.

* As for the other case Jacobson mentions, State v. Lis, he ignores its discussion of a "benefit" to a thief requiring a corresponding loss to the victim. In this case the "victim," billionaire public figure David Koch, suffered no loss other than — arguably — some diminution of his reputation which, as Prof. Jacobson already conceded, invokes the First Amendment defense that protects the fake David Koch.

Well played.

2 comments:

Pyrrho said...

Setting aside any First Amendment issues or the fact that the call was placed from New York, I don't think there is really even a reasonable argument that fake Koch used Koch's name to harm his reputation. Even if the intent was to harm Koch's reputation (obviously it was not), fake Koch did not use Koch's name to do so. The only possible harm came after it was revealed that the whole thing was a hoax. At that point, there obviously could not be any identity theft because nobody was claiming that it actually was Koch.

The only where there would have been potential identity theft is if they had released the tape and then publicly claimed that it actually was Koch on the other end.
The only way it would have

John Foust said...

Ever looking out for the underdog, I wonder what this means for Wisconsin residents who actually have the name "David Koch". They'll never be able to get through to the Governor ever, ever again.