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Gov. Christie Signs Bill Banning Type of Animal Abuse

The Humane Society of the United States applauds passage of new law banning bestiality

Gov. Chris Christie signed a measure into law that explicitly bans human sexual activity with animals, which isn’t covered under existing law. The bill, A. 3012, defines, prohibits and sets penalties for the sexual abuse of animals. Sponsored by Assemblyman Jack Ciattarelli, R-Somerset, the legislation was approved unanimously in both houses. Kathleen Schatzmann, New Jersey state director for The HSUS is issuing the following statement:

“We thank Assemblyman Ciattarelli and the members of the legislature for their unwavering efforts to strengthen New Jersey's animal protection laws. We know that sexual abuse of animals is an indicator of other violent, predatory sex crimes and applaud the signing of this bill into law.”

Thirty-seven states passed laws prohibiting sexual abuse of animals and 21 states consider bestiality to be a felony-level offense, including Georgia, North Carolina, Virginia, Mississippi and South Carolina. Bestiality remains legal in District of Columbia, Hawaii, Kentucky, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Vermont, West Virginia and Wyoming, with bills pending in New Hampshire and Ohio.

Katie Schwartzer, an HSUS intern who passed away in 2015, initiated the legislation through Assemblyman Ciattarelli’s office.


Media Contact: Samantha Miller: 301-258-1466; smiller@humanesociety.org

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