A. (1) The legislature hereby finds that this enactment is necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, morals, safety, and welfare and for the support of state government and its existing public institutions.
(2) The legislature further recognizes that:
(a) The preamble to the Constitution of Louisiana affirmatively states “We, the people of Louisiana, grateful to Almighty God for the civil, political, economic, and religious liberties we enjoy, and desiring to protect individual rights to life, liberty, and property; afford opportunity for the fullest development of the individual; assure equality of rights; promote the health, safety, education, and welfare of the people; maintain a representative and orderly government; ensure domestic tranquility; provide for the common defense; and secure the blessings of freedom and justice to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this constitution.”
(b) The state, under its police power, may enact laws in order to promote public peace, health, morals, and safety.
B. (1) For purposes of this Subsection, “ritualistic acts” means those acts undertaken as part of a ceremony, rite, initiation, observance, performance, or practice that result in or are intended to result in:
(a) The mutilation, dismemberment, torture, abuse, or sacrifice of animals.
(b) The ingestion of human or animal blood or human or animal waste.
(2) The acts defined in this Subsection are hereby determined to be destructive of the peace, health, morals, and safety of the citizens of this state and are hereby prohibited.
(3) Any person committing, attempting to commit, or conspiring with another to commit a ritualistic act may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than five years or fined not more than five thousand dollars, or both.
C. (1) No person shall commit ritualistic mutilation, dismemberment, or torture of a human as part of a ceremony, rite, initiation, observance, performance, or practice.
(2) No person shall commit ritualistic sexual abuse of children or of adults with physical or mental disabilities as part of a ceremony, rite, initiation, observance, performance, or practice.
(3) No person shall commit ritualistic psychological abuse of children or of adults with physical or mental disabilities as part of a ceremony, rite, initiation, observance, performance, or practice.
(4) Any person who commits, attempts to commit, or conspires with another to commit a violation of this Subsection shall be sentenced to imprisonment for not less than five nor more than twenty-five years and may be fined not more than twenty-five thousand dollars.
D. Each violation that occurs under the provisions of this Section shall be considered a separate violation.
E. The provisions of this Section shall not be construed to apply to generally accepted agricultural or horticultural practices and specifically the branding or identification of livestock.
F. The provisions of this Section shall not be construed to apply to any state or federally approved, licensed, or funded research project.
Added by Acts 1989, No. 637, § 1. Amended by Acts 2014, No. 811, § 6, eff. June 23, 2014.