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Alabama Court Rules Anti-Sodomy Law Unconstitutional

Alabama Court Rules Anti-Sodomy Law Unconstitutional

The Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals ruled last week that a state law banning consensual sodomy is unconstitutional.

The ruling comes from a 2010 court case where Dewayne Williams was charged with first-degree sodomy and sexual misconduct for having anal sex. Williams was convicted on the charge although he claimed that it was consensual and the male victim said it was forced.

Williams appealed, citing a Texas ruling that the state’s anti-sodomy law was unconstitutional. 

In Alabama’s ruling, the court said that “consent is no defense to a prosecution.”

But prosecutor Michael Jackson told reporters that the appeals court ruling is not fair to the victim.

"He got attacked by another man and he had sex he didn't want to have," Jackson told the Montgomery Advertiser. 

There are about 11 other states that have laws prohibiting sodomy. 

"Each and every person, no matter their sexual orientation or gender identity, is entitled to equal protection under the law," said Equality Alabama Chairman Ben Cooper in a statement.

"The Alabama court's unanimous decision overturning the statute is a step in the right direction and makes us optimistic for future and ongoing equal rights through the continued elimination of unconstitutional provisions in our state's constitution that violate privacy and equal protections."

Publication date: June 18, 2014