SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California has become the first state to prohibit “stealthing,” or removing a condom without permission during intercourse.
Gov. Gavin Newsom signed the law Thursday. It adds the act to the state’s civil definition of sexual battery, making it clear that victims can sue perpetrators, including for punitive damages.
The law makes it illegal to remove a condom without obtaining verbal consent.
Democratic Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia originally tried to make it a crime in 2017 after a study said acts of stealthing were increasing against both women and gay men.
Legislative analysts said then that it could already be considered misdemeanor sexual battery, but was rarely prosecuted.