2006-01-12 Un sénateur américain propose une loi contre la bestialité (EN)

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State senator offers bill to ban bestiality

Seattle PI ^ | January 12, 2006 OLYMPIA, Wash.


Reacting to a story that drew gasps of horror across the country, a state senator is asking her colleagues to outlaw sex with animals.

The issue drew unwanted attention to Washington state last year, when authorities revealed that a man died of a perforated colon after having sex with a horse on a farm in rural King County.

Sheriff's officers believed they had no options for criminal charges for the man's companions because bestiality was not explicitly covered under the state's animal cruelty law. Prosecutors did eventually get one conviction for trespassing.

Animal advocates responded with a push to outlaw bestiality, and Sen. Pam Roach, R-Auburn, vowed to sponsor the measure. Her bill began its legislative journey Thursday, heading to the Senate Judiciary Committee for review.

"It's something from which (animals) need to be protected," the veteran lawmaker said Thursday. "It was shocking to a lot of people that this kind of thing went on."

Bestiality is explicitly illegal in parts of the country, but Washington is one of about 20 states that do not address the issue in lawbooks, animal activists said.

That should change this year, said Susan Michaels, co-founder of the animal welfare group Pasado's Safe Haven.

"Our first response was, 'I can't believe this isn't already illegal,'" Michaels said. "The next response was, 'Who could possibly be against this?'"

Nevertheless, those crafting the bill had to make sure they didn't get too close to free-speech protections afforded to pornography or affect animal husbandry practices, Michaels said.

There also was a more fundamental problem.

"Some people find it so abhorrent that they don't even want to touch the bill," Michaels said. "They didn't even want to see it."

Authorities said the farm involved in the July 2 bestiality death was well-known on the Internet, and people from around the country had gone there to engage in sex with animals.

Investigators also said they found hundreds of hours of videotaped evidence.

Roach's bill also would make videotaping bestiality illegal, along with allowing or helping others to participate. The crimes would be low-level felonies, with a maximum punishment of five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.