By bringing public attention to the issue, Dan Grossman was able
According to this presentation from the Atlanta Police Department training academy, “Sodomy” is an “unnatural sex act [that] includes bestiality, buggery, cunnilingus, and fellatio” and consensual gay sex is a crime punishable by imprisonment.
The presentation explains that “Sodomy is oral or anal sex with consent” and that the “Punishment for Sodomy is 1 to 20 years.”
The presentation also includes definitions that seem highly inappropriate for inclusion in a presentation about sex crimes; for example it refers to “Nymphomania” (which it defines as “Abnormal and excessive need or desire in women for sexual intercourse”) and describes sex that is a “variation from the usual” and “which violates normal pattern” as “Deviant.”
Other offensive definitions include:
Buggery – Engaging in anal intercourse
Chicken Hawk – a pedophile who targets young boys
N.A.M.B.L.A. – North American Men Boy Lover’s Association
Nymphomania – Abnormal and excessive need or desire in women for sexual intercourse
Transsexual – A disturbance of gender identity in which a person feels a lifelong discomfort with his/her own sex and a compelling desire to be of the opposite sex
Transvestism – Sexual pleasure derived from dressing or masquerading in the clothing of the opposite sex, with the strong wish to appear as a member of the opposite sex. (Not necessarily gay)
The APD is Wrong: Consensual “Sodomy” — Gay or Straight — is Not a Crime
Contrary to the information offered in this presentation, consensual sex is not a crime, and any arrest for that activity would be unlawful.
The right of adults to engage in private, consensual, non-commercial oral or anal sex has not only been the law in the United States since 2003, with the Supreme Court decision in Lawrence v. Texas (539 U.S. 558), but it has been the law in Georgia even longer: The Georgia Supreme Court struck down the Georgia sodomy statute — the very same statute the Atlanta Police Department is training is officers to enforce — in 1998.
In Powell v. State the Georgia Supreme Court noted that “the sodomy statute’s raison d’etre can only be to regulate the private sexual conduct of consenting adults, something which Georgians’ right of privacy puts beyond the bounds of government regulation… We conclude that OCGA § 16-6-2, insofar as it criminalizes the performance of private, unforced, non-commercial acts of sexual intimacy between persons legally able to consent, manifestly infringes upon a constitutional provision …which guarantees to the citizens of Georgia the right of privacy.” Powell v. State, 270 Ga. 327 (1998).
In 2013 the Georgia Supreme Court made it clear that since consensual “sodomy” is itself not a crime, “solicitation of sodomy” is also not a crime unless the act is “(a) in public; (b) in exchange for money or anything of commercial value; (c) by force; or (d) by or with an individual who is incapable of giving legal consent to sexual activity.” Watson v. State, 293 Ga. 817 (2013).
In other word, any arrest for private, consensual, non-commercial oral or anal sex — or for “soliciting” someone to engage in it — would be unlawful.
The residents of Atlanta have a right to know:
- Why is the Atlanta Police Department training officers to make unlawful arrests for legally-protected consensual sex?
- Why is the Atlanta Police Department using such offensive and derogatory language in training materials?
- How could any officer with the Atlanta Police Academy have written something so legally incorrect and offensive?
- How could the APD training academy itself have allowed this to exist? Is there no supervision or oversight?