Monday, January 30, 2012

Kentucky Fried Law

A ruling by the Court of Appeals of Kentucky denies justice to one Larry Raines.

Larry Raines appeals from a judgment of the Jessamine Circuit Court on his conditional guilty plea to seven counts of incest.

Seven counts of incest? What, did he rape his 14-year-old daughter? He was sentenced to five years in prison, which would be too short of a term for such crimes.

But hold on.

Raines reserved his right to appeal based on whether the incest statute, as enacted in 2006, was applicable to the sexual contact between him and his stepdaughter since she was an adult at the time of the sexual incidents.

He had consensual sex with a grown woman who is not his biological relative, and was sentenced to five years in prison for it. For consensual sex. Not even incestuous consensual sex.

As we saw out of another state recently, general sex-negative attitudes and bigotry against consanguinamory specifically not only means absurd laws against consenting adults enjoying a consanguinamorous relationship, but also against people who aren’t even blood related having sex with each other.

Raines argues that the incest statute, which was in effect in 2006 when the incest occurred, did not criminalize consensual sexual relations between adult persons whose familial relationship was stepfather and stepdaughter, that is, in cases where the parties were adults and not blood-related. The Commonwealth counters that the statute did criminalize sexual intercourse between a stepfather and a stepdaughter notwithstanding that the stepdaughter was an adult.

Just to be clear…

At that time, KRS 530.020 stated:

(1) A person is guilty of incest when he has sexual intercourse or deviate sexual intercourse, as defined in KRS 510.010, with a person whom he or she knows to be an ancestor, descendant, brother, or sister. The relationships referred to herein include blood relationships of either the whole or half blood without regard to legitimacy, relationship of parent and child by adoption, and relationship of stepparent and stepchild.

(2)(a) Incest is a Class C felony

This is ridiculous. I would applaud attaching enhancements to sentences for rape, sexual assault, and molestation committed by a guardian or under the color of authority. But anti-incest laws that criminalize consensual sex between adults, even unrelated adults, are a waste of law enforcement. An adult should be free to share love, sex, residence, and marriage with any consenting adults, without prosecution, without bullying, and without discrimination.
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