Citation. 104 F.3d 1492, 1997 U.S. App. 1353.
Brief Fact Summary. The Defendant, Abraham Jacob Alkhabaz, a.k.a. Jake Baker (Defendant), posted a story on a Usenet news group, “alt.sex.stories,” detailing the torture, rape, and murder of a young woman possessing the same name as one of the Defendant’s classmates at the University of Michigan.
Synopsis of Rule of Law. A “communication containing a threat” must be such that a reasonable person (1) would view the communication as expressing the intent to inflict bodily harm and (2) would view the communication as an attempt to effect change or achieve some goal through intimidation.
Facts. The Defendant and Arthur Gonda had exchanged emails expressing a sexual interest in violence against females. The Defendant sent and received the messages in Ann Arbor, Michigan and Gonda sent and received messages in Ontario, Canada. The Defendant had previously posted stories on a Usenet news group, “alt.sex.stories.” The stories mainly told of the abduction, rape, torture, mutilation and murder of women and young girls. The story for which the Defendant was arrested described the torture, rape, and murder of a girl sharing a name with one of the defendant’s classmates.
Issue. Is the Defendant’s posted story a “communication containing a threat?”