4 U.S. states where bestiality is not a crime

As of June 2021, the US states of Hawaii, New Mexico, West Virginia, and Wyoming did not have laws against bestiality according to Cornell Law School (wrong? Please tell me in a comment). I found this extraordinary. Amazing. If there is not criminal law against bestiality it is not a crime per se. If the animal is harmed in an act of bestiality, it would be a crime under animal protection and welfare laws. It would also be the crime of criminal damage but that crime is rarely used in respect of injuring animals. But that’s different. This is about the actual act of sex with an animal.

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Honolulu Civil Beat tells me that the Hawaiian government was in 2019 considering a bill (House Bill 24) which would make bestiality a criminal offence (sexual assault). One politician said that it was anecdotal that bestiality is still needed in Hawaii but the fact is confirmed by the Humane Society of the United States.

That same website states that there are no laws against bestiality in Texas, Vermont and Nevada and also states that there are no laws against bestiality in Kentucky, West Virginia, Wyoming, New Mexico and the District of Columbia (Washington DC).

It is incorrect (today) to say that Kentucky does not have a law which makes bestiality a crime because a law making it illegal was enacted in June 27, 2020 as I understand it. But as you can see it is quite recent. They were on the blacklist of states which had carelessly failed to enact statutes against the crime.

Also, Nevada has a statute against bestiality. Under NRS 201.455, bestiality is treated as a criminal offense in the state of Nevada.

The Pace International Law Review states that in parts of Colombia “it is a rite of passage for a male to have sex with a donkey” (2016).

They also add that there were at the time of the publication of their article in 2016, nine American states where bestiality was not considered a crime.

They add that in Mexico there are or were shows where a person can pay to see a woman and a donkey engaging sex acts.

The Spokesman Review reports that bestiality was made crime in 2006 in Washington DC. Under current Washington law, bestiality is now a Class C felony punishable by up to five years in prison.

1 thought on “4 U.S. states where bestiality is not a crime”

  1. I believe you info relates to 2016 – 2021 news stories. The latest one I found only refers to New Mexico being likely to introduce a new law against it. I may be wrong, though. Only Googled it.


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