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IN Passes Excrement Law

Senate Enrolled Act #56, which went into effect on July 1, 1995, added a new section to the Indiana Criminal Code which makes it a crime to "knowingly or intentionally in a rude, insolent, or angry manner place blood or another body fluid or waste on a Law Enforcement Officer or a Correctional Officer identified as such and while engaged in the performance of official duties." It also makes it a crime to coerce another person to commit such an act. This act is considered to be "battery by body waste."

The seriousness of the offense ranges from a Class D to Class A felony depending upon whether the person committing the act has a communicable disease and whether the disease was transmitted to the other person.

Indiana prisoners have been notified by DOC memo that "any offender who throws bodily fluids or waste on staff shall be considered to have committed this act." The memo also states that "this action may be referred to the local Prosecutor to file criminal charges."

It will be interesting to note if or how this law may be abused by law enforcement officials (and prison guards) who may use it as a tool to further repress "trouble makers." When a guard/cop knocks a prisoner/citizen to the ground, cracks his/her head open with a metal baton; would the bleeding victim be knowingly or intentionally in a rude, insolent, or angry manner placing blood on the guard/cop by shaking their head in a struggle to avoid more blows? There are plenty of guard/cop types who would classify such behavior as 'rude and insolent."

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