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Name: People v. Fisher
Case #: C070295
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 3 DCA
Opinion Date: 05/10/2013
Summary

Defendant’s demand for a job, coupled with a threat to commit vandalism if not hired, was extortion, as the job constituted “property” under the statute. Fisher applied for a job with a towing company in Susanville, tendering with his job application a letter which threatened he would vandalize cars at the business if he did not get the job. The business owner reported this threat to authorities, who arrested Fisher. He appealed his conviction for extortion, claiming his demand for a job was not a demand for “property” within Penal Code section 523. Held: Affirmed. The term “property” under section 523 is broadly construed in cases and statutes. Fisher’s threat to be given a job or he would vandalize the business was a demand for part of the employer’s business–the intangible right to control whom the business would employ. Thus, “property for purposes of the extortion statute includes a business owner’s right to determine whom to employ.”