Home GLBT Cooch’s Office Defends Sodomy Laws, Tells Caller “Y’all don’t even live here…”

Cooch’s Office Defends Sodomy Laws, Tells Caller “Y’all don’t even live here…”


The following comment was left on the Bilerico Project blog, in response to a post by Michael Hamar on efforts by Equality Virginia “to keep the pressure on Virginia GOP Governor Bob McDonnell and the gay haters in the Virginia General Assembly.”  The commenter is from Lawrenceville, Georgia. I find the comment, which Michael Hamar pointed out to me, interesting on two counts: 1) Cooch’s office actually defending Virginia’s antiquated, bizarre, unconstitutional, normally unenforced anti-“sodomy” laws; and 2) the rude manner in which the caller is treated by Cooch’s office. The embarrassment to Virginia continues embarrassing.

I telephoned both the Office of the Governor of Virginia and the Office of the Attorney General of Virginia concerning the very public stance they’ve taken concerning non-heterosexually oriented persons in their state.

I also took this chance to complain to the Attorney General concerning a practice of some of Virginia’s local law-enforcement jurisdictions, where they continue to make arrests for violations of Virginia’s sodomy laws, imprisoning men for violations of those laws, then having the judges dismiss those charges when the men are brought to trial – not at arraignment, but at actual trial. I reminded the Virginia AG’s Office of Lawrence v. Texas, and how the Supreme Court had issued a decision which negated all sodomy laws, nationwide.

The AG’s Office informed me Virginia has not repealed their sodomy laws, so that arrest under those laws was still justified, and the process in place was correct: local jurisdictions follow the laws on the books, a trial court dismisses those charges to conform with federal court decisions; that was “how the system works.”

Then the kicker:

“Y’all don’t even live here, so it really doesn’t affect you. Goodbye.”


I just hope that Cooch’s job doesn’t include promoting Virginia tourism, certainly not with the slogan, “Virginia is for lovers!” Ha.

  • I know it was recently voted to give McDonnell money to “invest in tourism” but this wasn’t what I think most of us had in mind!

  • IBelieveInHenryHowell

    *Please pick up your approved lovers list in the visitors center at your nearest point of entry. Oh, and btw, have a nice day.

  • normanva

    What I’m wondering is if cooch is planning on making one of these arrests another test case for the US Supreme Court.  With the conservative majority on the court now, cooch might think he can get the original ruling overturned.  These folks haven’t had any problem overturning other legal opinions.

  • for getting the word out on Cuccinelli’s on going refusal to recognize binding legal precents and apparent desire to harrass gay Virginians for sport.  God knows how much damage he will do to the state over then next four years.

  • Vastly Amused

    While no fan of the AG,and certainly no friend of any anti-gay morons, I would like to point out the following:

    1) The Courts of the Commonwealth have chosen to interpret the “Lawrence” decision as applying ONLY to “private conduct between consenting adults”, i.e., those taking place behind the closed doors of one’s home (or hotel room) (interestingly enough, one of the cases which first considered “Lawrence” involved oral sex between a male defendant and an under-aged girl). The Courts have held it does not cover any public sex acts. So, with no information as to the cases the Georgia caller was referring to, I can not comment on the “practice of some of Virginia’s local law-enforcement jurisdictions,”. However,IF those jurisdictions are arresting people for “private consensual acts”, then yes, they are violating the law as it is in Virginia. The AG should get off his ass and investigate instead of telling people to basically go F off.

    2) The issue of repealing those archaic laws rests with the General Assembly. It wouldn’t hurt if the next time you see your GA rep, you remind him that times change,and in light of SCOTUS decisions, the Code of Virginia needs revising.Expect him to assure you he will look into it- and promptly forget about it. Politicians are kinda skittish about defending blow jobs. 😉

    But in any event- WTH was the AG thinking? If you can’t explain the law in clear terms, and in a civil manner- get another line of work.