Last edited: December 06, 2004

Va. Senate Nixes Change To Sodomy Law

The Advocate, February 26-28, 2000

Virginia lawmakers rejected a proposed change Wednesday that would have represented a step toward eliminating the state’s sodomy law. A senate committee voted 9–5 against decreasing the penalty for adults breaking the 200-year-old "crimes against nature" law that makes it a felony for consenting adults, including married adults, to engage in oral or anal sex. The change to a misdemeanor would have lowered the maximum fine to $250 from $2,500, eliminated the possibility of jail time, and allowed those convicted to keep their voting rights. After failing for eight years to have the law repealed outright, delegate L. Karen Darner succeeded this year in getting the state house of delegates to approve changing its classification to a misdemeanor.

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