CHAPTER 944. CRIMES AGAINST SEXUAL MORALITY
Subchapter IV. Obscenity
944.20 Lewd and lascivious behavior.
(1) Whoever does any of the following is guilty of a Class A misdemeanor:
(a) Commits an indecent act of sexual gratification with another with knowledge that they are in the presence of others; or
(b) Publicly and indecently exposes genitals or pubic area.
(2) Subsection (1) does not apply to a mother's breast-feeding of her child.
History: 1977 c. 173; 1983 a. 17; 1989 a. 31; 1995 a. 165.
"Publicly" is susceptible to a construction that will avoid the question of constitutional overbreadth, by limiting the application of the statute to
constitutionally permissible goals of protecting children from exposure to obscenity and preventing assaults on the sensibilities of unwilling adults in public. Reichenberger v. Warren, 319 F. Supp. 1237 (1970).
CHAPTER 947. CRIMES AGAINST PUBLIC PEACE, ORDER AND OTHER INTERESTS
947.01 Disorderly conduct. Whoever, in a public or private place, engages in violent, abusive, indecent,
profane, boisterous, unreasonably loud or otherwise disorderly conduct under circumstances in which the conduct tends to cause or provoke a disturbance is guilty of a Class B misdemeanor.
History: 1977 c. 173; 1979 c. 131.
The defendant was properly convicted of disorderly conduct when he appeared on a stage wearing a minimum of clothing intending to and succeeding in
causing a loud reaction in the audience. State v. Maker, 48 Wis. 2d 612, 180 N.W.2d 707 (1970).
An attorney was properly convicted under this section for refusing to leave a ward in a mental hospital until he had seen a client after having made
statements in the presence of patients that caused some to become agitated. State v. Elson, 60 Wis. 2d 54, 208 N.W.2d 363 (1973).
It was not disorderly conduct for 4 people to enter an office with other members of the public for the purpose of protesting the draft and to refuse to leave
on orders of the police when their conduct was not otherwise disturbing. State v. Werstein, 60 Wis. 2d 668, 211 N.W.2d 437 (1973).
This statute does not require a victim, but when the disorderly conduct is directed at a person, that person is the victim for the purpose of prosecuting
the perpetrator for intimidating a victim under s. 940.44. State v. Vinje, 201 Wis. 2d 98, 548 N.W.2d 118 (Ct. App. 1996), 95−1484.
A "true threat" is a statement that a speaker would reasonably foresee that a listener would reasonably interpret as a serious expression of a purpose to
inflict harm, as distinguished from hyperbole, jest, innocuous talk, expressions of political views, or other similarly protected speech. It is not necessary
that the speaker have the ability to carry out the threat. State v. Perkins, 2001 WI 46, 243 Wis. 2d 141, 626 N.W.2d 762, 99−1924.
Purely written speech, even written speech that fails to cause an actual disturbance, can constitute disorderly conduct, but the state has the burden to
prove that the speech is constitutionally unprotected "abusive" conduct. "Abusive" conduct is conduct that is injurious, improper, hurtful, offensive, or
reproachful. "True threats" clearly fall within the scope of this definition. State v. Douglas D. 2001 WI 47, 243 Wis. 2d 204, 626 N.W.2d 725, 99−1767.
Application of the disorderly conduct statute to speech alone is permissible under appropriate circumstances. When speech is not an essential part of any
exposition of ideas, when it is utterly devoid of social value, and when it can cause or provoke a disturbance, the disorderly conduct statute can be
applicable. State v. A.S. 2001 WI 48, 243 Wis. 2d 173, 626 N.W.2d 712, 99−2317.
Disorderly conduct does not necessarily require disruptions that implicate the public directly. This section encompasses conduct that tends to cause a
disturbance or disruption that is personal or private in nature, as long as there exists the real possibility that the disturbance or disruption will spill over
and disrupt the peace, order, or safety of the surrounding community as well. Sending repeated, unwelcome, and anonymous mailings was "otherwise
disorderly conduct." State v. Schwebke, 2002 WI 55, 253 Wis. 2d 1, 644 N.W.2d 666, 99−3204.
Defiance of a police officer's order to move is itself disorderly conduct if the order is lawful. Bruan v. Baldwin, 346 F.3d 761 (2003).
948.10 Exposing genitals or pubic area.
(1) Whoever, for purposes of sexual arousal or sexual gratification, causes a child to expose genitals or pubic area or exposes genitals or pubic area to a child is guilty of the following:
Except as provided in par. (b), a Class I felony.
(b) A Class A misdemeanor if any of the following applies:
The actor is a child when the violation occurs.
2. At the time of the violation, the actor had not attained the age of 19 years and was not more than 4 years older than the child.
(2) Subsection (1) does not apply under any of the following circumstances:
(a) The child is the defendant's spouse.
A mother's breast-feeding of her child.
History: 1987 a. 332; 1989 a. 31; 1995 a. 165; 2009 a. 202
Exposing a child to harmful material or harmful descriptions or narrations.
(1) Definitions. In this section:
(ag) "Harmful description or narrative account" means any explicit and detailed description or narrative
account of sexual excitement, sexually explicit conduct, sadomasochistic abuse, physical torture or brutality that, taken as a whole, is harmful to children.
(ar) "Harmful material" means:
1. Any picture, photograph, drawing, sculpture, motion picture film or similar visual representation or image of a person or portion of the human body that depicts nudity, sexually explicit conduct,
sadomasochistic abuse, physical torture or brutality and that is harmful to children; or
2. Any book, pamphlet, magazine, printed matter however reproduced or sound recording that
contains any matter enumerated in 948.11(1)(ar)1.subd. 1., or explicit and detailed verbal descriptions or narrative accounts of sexual excitement, sexually explicit conduct, sadomasochistic abuse,
physical torture or brutality and that, taken as a whole, is harmful to children.
(b) "Harmful to children" means that quality of any description, narrative account or representation, in
whatever form, of nudity, sexually explicit conduct, sexual excitement, sadomasochistic abuse, physical torture or brutality, when it:
1. Predominantly appeals to the prurient, shameful or morbid interest of children;
2. Is patently offensive to prevailing standards in the adult community as a whole with respect to
what is suitable for children; and
3. Lacks serious literary, artistic, political, scientific or educational value for children, when taken as a whole.
(bm) "Knowledge of the nature of the description or narrative account" means knowledge of the character and content of a harmful description or narrative account.
(c) "Knowledge of the nature of the material" means knowledge of the character and content of any material described herein.
(d) "Nudity" means the showing of the human male or female genitals, pubic area or buttocks with less than a full opaque covering, or the showing of the female breast with less than a fully opaque covering of any
portion thereof below the top of the nipple, or the depiction of covered male genitals in a discernibly turgid state.
(e) "Person" means any individual, partnership, firm, association, corporation or other legal entity.
(f) "Sexual excitement" means the condition of human male or female genitals when in a state of sexual stimulation or arousal.
(2) Criminal penalties.
(a) Whoever, with knowledge of the nature of the material, sells, rents, exhibits, transfers or loans to a child any harmful material, with or without monetary consideration, is guilty of a Class E felony.
(am) Any person who has attained the age of 17 and who, with knowledge of the nature of the description or narrative account, verbally communicates, by any means, a harmful description or narrative account to a
child, with or without monetary consideration, is guilty of a Class E felony.
(b) Whoever, with knowledge of the nature of the material, possesses harmful material with the intent to sell,
rent, exhibit, transfer or loan the material to a child is guilty of a Class A misdemeanor.
(c) It is an affirmative defense to a prosecution for a violation of this section if the defendant had reasonable
cause to believe that the child had attained the age of 18 years, and the child exhibited to the defendant a draft card, driver's license, birth certificate or other official or apparently official document purporting to
establish that the child had attained the age of 18 years. A defendant who raises this affirmative defense has the burden of proving this defense by a preponderance of the evidence.
942.09 Representations depicting nudity.
(1) In this section:
(a) "Captures a representation" means takes a photograph, makes a motion picture, videotape, or other visual representation, or records or stores in any medium data that represents a visual image.
(b) "Nudity" has the meaning given in s. 948.11 (1) (d).
(c) "Representation" means a photograph, exposed film, motion picture, videotape, other visual representation, or data that represents a visual image.
(2) Whoever does any of the following is guilty of a Class I felony:
NOTE: Sub. (2)(intro.) is shown as amended eff. 2𢴎3 by 2001 Wis. Act 109. Prior to 2𢴎3 it reads:
(2) Whoever does any of the following is guilty of a Class E felony:
(a) Captures a representation that depicts nudity without the knowledge and consent of the person who is depicted
nude while that person is nude in a circumstance in which he or she has a reasonable expectation of privacy, if the person knows or has reason to know that the person who is depicted nude does not know of and consent to the
capture of the representation.
(b) Makes a reproduction of a representation that the person knows or has reason to know was captured in violation of
par. (a) and that depicts the nudity depicted in the representation captured in violation of par. (a), if the person depicted nude in the reproduction did not consent to the making of the reproduction.
(c) Possesses, distributes, or exhibits a representation that was captured in violation of par. (a) or a reproduction made
in violation of par. (b), if the person knows or has reason to know that the representation was captured in violation of
par. (a) or the reproduction was made in violation of par. (b), and if the person who is depicted nude in the representation or reproduction did not consent to the possession, distribution, or exhibition.
(3) Notwithstanding sub. (2) (a), (b), and (c), if the person depicted nude in a representation or reproduction is a child and the
capture, possession, exhibition, or distribution of the representation, or making, possession, exhibition, or distribution of the
reproduction, does not violate s. 948.05 or 948.12, a parent, guardian, or legal custodian of the child may do any of the following:
(a) Capture and possess the representation or make and possess the reproduction depicting the child.
(b) Distribute or exhibit a representation captured or possessed under par. (a), or distribute or exhibit a reproduction made or possessed under par. (a), if the distribution or exhibition is not for commercial purposes.
(4) This section does not apply to a person who receives a representation or reproduction depicting a child from a parent,
guardian, or legal custodian of the child under sub. (3) (b), if the possession, exhibition, or distribution is not for commercial purposes.
History: 1995 a. 249; 2001 a. 16; 2001 a. 33 ss. 2 to 13; Stats. 2001 s. 942.09; 2001a. 109.
DNR TRUST FUNDS AND THEIR MANAGEMENT
Click here for the text excerpts from the Wisconsin state statute controlling the use of federal money on
certain property of the Department of Natural Resources.
NAC NOTE: The absence here of a listed anti-nudity ordinance for a particular Wisconsin county must NOT be taken to mean that
no such ordinance exists for that county.
Vernon County Code
Article I. In General
Sec. 42-3. Pornographic material and performances.
(a) Definitions. The following words, terms and phrases, when used in this section, shall have the
meanings ascribed to them in this subsection, except where the context clearly indicates a different meaning:
Distribute means to transfer possession of, with or without consideration.
Material means any printed matter, visual representation or sound recording, and includes, but is not limited to, books, magazines, photographs, drawings, sculptures and tapes or wire recordings.
Nudity means uncovered or less than opaquely covered post-pubertal human genitals, pubic areas,
female breast below a point immediately above the top of the areola or the covered human male genitals in a discernibly turgid state. For purposes of this definition, a female breast is considered
uncovered if the nipple only and the areola only are covered.
Performance means any play, motion picture film, dance or other exhibition performed before an audience.
Person means any individual, partnership, firm, association, corporation or other legal entity.
Pornographic means any material or performance which:
(1) Taken as a whole, the dominate theme of the material or performance appeals to a prurient interest in sex;
(2) Is patently offensive because it affronts contemporary community standards relating to the description or representation of sexual matter; and
(3) Is utterly without redeeming literary, artistic, political, scientific or social value.
Sadomasochistic abuse means:
(1) Flagellation or torture by or upon a person who is nude or clad in undergarments or in a revealing or bizarre costume; or
(2) The condition of being fettered, bound or otherwise physically restrained on the part of a person who is nude or clad in undergarments or in a revealing or bizarre costume.
Sexual conduct means ultimate sexual acts, including, but not limited to, masturbation, homosexuality, lesbianism, bestiality, sexual intercourse, fellatio or cunnilingus.
(b) Unlawful exhibition and distribution. It shall be unlawful for any person to exhibit or distribute,
offer to distribute or have in his possession with the intent to distribute any material portraying sadomasochistic abuse, sexual conduct or nudity which is pornographic.
(c) Unlawful performances. It shall be unlawful for any person to give, advertise, produce, exhibit or perform in any performance which portrays sadomasochistic abuse, sexual conduct or nudity
which is pornographic in any playhouse, theater, hall or other place within the county.
(d) Public nuisance declared. Any performance declared by this section to be unlawful
constitutes a public nuisance and may be enjoined.
(e) Legal proceedings. Any resident of the county is given standing to institute legal proceedings
to obtain a declaratory judgment whether any material or performance portraying sadomasochistic abuse, sexual conduct or nudity is, or is not, pornographic.
(f) Violations; penalties. Any person who violates any of the provisions of subsections (b) and (c) of this section shall, upon conviction, be subject to section 1-11.
(g) Severability of subsection (e). Subsection (e) of this section is declared to be severable from this section, and if such section is declared invalid, in whole or in part, the remainder of this section
shall not be thereby affected, it being the intention of the county board that it would have enacted the remainder of this section without such subsection.
Return to NAC Home Page