Last edited: February 14, 2005

Appeals Court Rules Against Change in Sodomy Law

Associated Press, November 22, 2000

The Virginia Court of Appeals has rejected a challenge to the state law against sodomy. A three-judge panel of the court unanimously upheld the convictions of nine men arrested for soliciting sex with undercover police officers in Roanoke’s public parks. A lawyer for the men had argued the law should be struck down because consensual oral sex is common among married, unmarried, gay and straight people. But the court ruled that the private conduct of married couples has nothing to do with efforts by Roanoke authorities to combat "cruising" by gay men in a city park. Thirty years ago, all 50 states had laws that prohibited consensual oral sex. Today, Virginia is one of 17 states that still has a law against sodomy.

Elvis Gene DePriest, et al. v. Commonwealth of Virginia, 2000

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