Statute used despite unconstitutional status
Originally posted: May 25, 2008, 2:27p.m.
Updated: May 31, 2008, 11:34 a.m.
RALEIGH, N.C. — On Friday, May 30, the Wake County District Attorney’s office cited the landmark U.S. Supreme Court Lawrence v. Texas (2003) decision in dropping crimes against nature charges against two men.
The two men had been originally charged on May 25 using the state’s Crimes Against Nature statute, as reported by The News and Observer on Saturday.
Police first arrested and charged 40-year-old man, who called them to the private residence to report an attack. Later, police arrested and charged his 25-year-old partner with the same charge.
The 25-year-old was also charged with simple assault for biting Sloan and communicating threats for telling Sloan he was going to disembowel him.
“This looks like a case of a consensual act that may have gotten out of hand,” Raleigh police Capt. T.D. Hardy told the daily newspaper. “The law is still on the books. Our detectives got involved in it last night and decided this was the best thing to do. What the D.A.’s office will do with it, I don’t know.”
The 40-year-old insists that he was the victim of an assault.
“I didn’t allow anything,” he told The News and Observer Saturday. “They knew it and turned it around and arrested me. I have never been so humiliated in all my life. It’s just awful.”
The Crimes Against Nature statute remains on the books in North Carolina, despite the 2003 Lawrence v. Texas U.S. Supreme Court ruling that disallowed use of such statutes in prosecuting private, consensual acts.
Efforts to have the statute repealed in the state legislature have consistently failed, in part due to pressure from conservative activists.
Durham LGBT activist and nationally-respected blogger Pam Spaulding wrote May 25 that the use of the statute in this case is not only unconstitutional but might also be hampering the prosecution of a real crime — sexual assault.
The 40-year-old man had to post a $3,000 bond to be released from jail. The 25-year-old man posted a $4,500 bond.
[Ed. Note â€” This story has been updated. The names of the accused men have been removed. (July 23, 2012)]