UNITED STATES LAWS
REGARDING SEX

This edition of the alt.sex FAQs was written in the early part of 1994 by the last Alt.sex FAQ Committee. They reflect the best wisdom and knowledge of all the participants on the committee at that time.

UNITED STATES SODOMY LAWS, STATE BY STATE

In the first column, an M indicates misdemeanor, F is felony.

ALABAMA
M 13A-6-65, Sexual Misconduct, 1 year/$2000
Does not apply to married couples.

ALASKA Repealed effective 1980

ARIZONA
M 13-1411, Crime Against Nature (anal intercourse), 30 days/$500
M 13-1412, Lewd and Lascivious Acts, 30 days/$500

ARKANSAS
M 5-14-111, Sodomy, 1 year/$1000, same sex only
Bill passed unanimously "aimed at weirdos and queers who live in a fairyland world and are trying to wreck family life." Signed into law by governor in 1977.
CALIFORNIA Repealed effective 1976

COLORADO Repealed effective 1972

CONNECTICUT Repealed effective 1971

DELAWARE Repealed effective 1973

FLORIDA
M 800.02, Unnatural and Lascivious Act, 60 days/$500

GEORGIA
F 16-6-2, Sodomy, 1 to 20 years
Upheld as to homosexuals on the grounds that there is no fundamental federal constitutional right to "engage in sodomy." Bowers v. Hardwick, 478 U.S. 186 (1986).
M 16-6-15, Solicitation of Sodomy, 1 year/$1000

HAWAII Repealed effective 1973

IDAHO
F 18-6605, Crime Against Nature, 5 years to life

ILLINOIS Repealed effective 1962

First state to repeal sodomy laws, in 1961.
INDIANA Repealed effective 1977

Earlier effort to repeal said legalization might "give us an opportunity to study it more openly, and to see what causes it, in the hope that we can eventually eliminate it."
IOWA Repealed effective 1978

KANSAS
M 21-3505, Sodomy, 6 months/$1000, same sex only

KENTUCKY
Held unconstitutional by state Supreme Court 1992. Commonwealth v. Wasson

LOUISIANNA
F 14.89, Crime Against Nature, 5 years/$2000.
Held unconstitutional by Orleans Parish Court, appeal pending.
MAINE Repealed effective 1976

MARYLAND
F 27-553, Sodomy, 10 years
F 27-554, Unnatural or Perverted Sexual Practices, 10 years/$1000
Found not to apply to noncommercial, hetrosexual activity in private. Schochet v. State, 1990.
MASSACHUSETTS
F 272-34, Crime Against Nature, 20 years
F 272-35, Unnatural and Lascivious Acts, 5 years/$100-$1000
Crime Against Nature applies only to anal intercourse. Unnatural and Lascivious Acts has been held not apply to private consensual adult behavior. Commonwealth v. Balthazar, Supreme Judicial Court 1974. It has been suggested that such a ruling would apply to Crime Against Nature.
MICHIGAN
F 750.158, Crime Against Nature, 15 years
Held unconstitutional as applied to private, consensual adult behavior. Michigan Organization for Human Rights v. Kelly (Wayne County Circ. Ct. 1990), no appeal taken, only applies to Wayne County. Held consitutional by Michigan Court of Apeals (People v. Brashier) 1992, effective outside of Wayne County. Decision is needed from the Michigan Supreme Court.
MINNESOTA
M 609.293, Sodomy, 1 year/$3000
Minnesota's law also prohibits sex between humans and birds.
MISSISSIPPI
F 97-29-59, Unnatural Intercourse, 10 years

MISSOURI
M 566.090, Sexual Misconduct, 1 year/$1000, same sex only

MONTANA
F 45-5-505, Deviate Sexual Conduct, 10 years/$50,000, same sex only

NEBRASKA Repealed effective 1978

NEVADA Repealed effective 1993

NEW HAMPSHIRE Repealed effective 1975

NEW JERSEY Repealed effective 1979

NEW MEXICO Repealed effective 1975

NEW YORK
Held unconstitutional by state Supreme Court 1980, People v. Onofre

NORTH CAROLINA
F 14-177, Crime Against Nature, 10 years / discretionary fine

NORTH DAKOTA Repealed effective 1975

OHIO Repealed effective 1974

OKLAHOMA
F 21-886, Crime Against Nature, 10 years
A 1977 effort to repeal sodomy laws was met with a vote-delaying "chorus of giggles."
OREGON Repealed effective 1972

PENNSYLVANIA
Held unconstitutional by state Supreme Court 1980. Commonwealth v. Bonadio

RHODE ISLAND
F 11-10-1, Crime Against Nature, 7-20 years. Includes "ordinary extramarital intercourse."

SOUTH CAROLINA
F 16-15-120, Buggery, 5 years/$500
The law actually legislates the "abominable crime of buggery." No further statutory explaination given.
SOUTH DAKOTA Repealed effective 1977

TENNESSEE
M 39-13-510, Homosexual Acts, 30 days/$50, same sex only

TEXAS
Found unconstitutional by state Court of Appeals, England v. Dallas, no appeal taken. Effective 1994 with the dismissal of Morales v. State.

UTAH
M 76-5-403, Sodomy, 6 months/$1000
In 1982, the Republican State Convention added a plank to its platform stating that homosexuals should be denied the civil, political, social, and economic rights guaranteed to others.
VERMONT Repealed effective 1977

VIRGINIA
F 18.2-361, Crime Against Nature, 5-20 years

WASHINGTON Repealed effective 1976

WEST VIRGINIA Repealed effective 1976

WISCONSIN Repealed effective 1983

WYOMING Repealed effective 1977

U.S. Possesions

D.C. Repealed effective 1993

AMERICAN SAMOA Repealed effective ?

GUAM Repealed effective ?

N. MARIANA IS. Repealed effective ?

VIRGIN ISLANDS Repealed effective ?

PUERTO RICO
Criminal, penalties unknown.
Compiled by
Bob Summersgill <xe605C@GWUVM.GWU.EDU>
DC Sodomy-Law reform coalition.


AGE OF CONSENT IN THE UNITED STATES, BY STATE

As of August 6, 1994

Alabama16
Alaska16
Arizona18
Arkansas16
California18
Colorado16
Connecticut16
D.C.16
Delaware16
Florida18
Georgia16
Hawaii16[3]
Idaho18
Illinois16
Indiana16
Iowa14
Kansas16
Kentucky14[1]
Louisiana17
Maine14
Maryland16
Massachusetts18
Michigan16
Minnesota16
Mississippi18[2]
Missouri16
Montana16
Nebraska16
Nevada16
New Hampshire16
New Jersey16
New Mexico13
New York17
North Carolina16
North Dakota18
Ohio16
Oklahoma18
Oregon18
Pennsylvania14
Rhode Island16
South Carolina16
South Dakota16
Tennessee18
Texas17
Utah14
Vermont15
Virginia16
Washington18
West Virginia16
Wisconsin18
Wyoming18

Footnotes:

[1] Age 16 if the man is 21 or older.
[2] If the female is over 12, the statute applies only to virgins.
[3] If the victim is 14 or fifteen and the defendant is within three years of age, the court has discretion.
Contributed by:
Bill Casti <quire@vector.casti.com>

Elf Sternberg <elf@halcyon.com>

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