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Abuse of Corpse Crimes in Other States

Courts & Judicial
Crimes, Corrections, & Enforcement

This memorandum addresses abuse of corpse laws in the 50 states.  While the vast majority of states have enacted abuse of corpse or other related laws, they differ in definition and crime classification.  For example, some states outline penalties for mutilating or defacing a corpse, while others more broadly define it as “outraging family sensibilities.”  Over half of the states (27) have classified this crime as a felony instead of a misdemeanor. 

The effective date for bills enacted without a safety clause is August 7, 2024, if the General Assembly adjourns sine die on May 8, 2024, unless otherwise specified. Details