Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Kim v. Superior Court (Cal. Ct. App. - Feb. 14, 2006)

Now here's the type of opinion that I'd expect -- nay, demand -- to see published on Valentine's Day. One with a critical issue that's entirely appropriate for resolution on February 14:

Can words alone constitute an "act" in furtherance of an agreement to engage in an act of prostitution?

The answer, by the way, is "Yes". At least according to Justice Zelon. So if you're "looking for love" this V-Day, let's keep it clean, okay?

P.S. -- Yeah, yeah. I know you're dying to hear what precisely the magic words are that can get you (or, in this case, the alleged prostitute) in trouble. Salacious bastards. Okay, I relent. Here they are: "Defendant placed her right index finger on her mouth and told Officer Gutierrez to be quiet when he asked her if he could have sex with her for a little more money; raised her index finger and said ‘one’ after the officer asked if he could have sex for sixty dollars; stated ‘yes’ after the officer pointed to her groin area and asked if she was clean ‘down there[;]’ responded ‘yes’ when the officer asked whether she had a condom; and instructed the officer to take off his clothes.”

So now you know. Don't use those words. Okay? (Actually, in truth, the only words that Justice Zelon holds matters are the verbal instructions to the -- undercover (duh!) -- officer to take off his clothes. It was those instructions, she holds, that constitute the actionable "act" in furtherance of the agreement.)

P.P.S. - Why did I have to wait until 4:00 p.m. today for a good Valentine's Day opinion?! Can't we get these things out any earlier? I've got real work to do, after all!