Based on this headline, there are probably two questions you're asking.

  1. Wait, it was legal before?!
  2. Why is it just now becoming illegal?

Two very valid questions to be asking, mind you. In case you're unaware of what necrophilia is (I'm jealous of your ignorance), necrophilia is when someone is sexually attracted to or has committed sexual acts with a dead body.


It is a rather disgusting act for many reasons (morally, ethically, health-wise, etc), but the question of why it is being made illegal now requires some background information.


Photo by The Good Funeral Guide on Unsplash
Photo by The Good Funeral Guide on Unsplash

Melody's Law

Gretchen Whitmer is expected to sign a set of bills into law that make "sexual penetration of a corpse" a felony resulting in up to 15 years in prison. The bill goes on to say that any sexual contact with a dead body for "sexual arousal or gratification" would carry a misdemeanor of up to two years in prison and a fine of up to $500.


READ MORE: Michigan Woman In New Netflix Docuseries About Cult Responds |


As for why this bill is being passed now when Michigan has gone all this time without it is a very sad story. Up until now, Michigan has been one of 5 states where necrophilia is technically legal thanks to a legal loophole where there hasn't been legislation regarding necrophilia introduced to law.


Legal knowledge
Nikolay Mamluke


It was this loophole that caused 31-year-old Colby Martin to only get convicted of murder, failing to stop at the scene of a fatal crash, and concealing death after he ran 64-year-old Melody Rohrer over, loaded her body into his truck where he later "committed sexual acts with the body" before dumping her body in the woods. Since there was no law about necrophilia in Michigan, he was not charged for sexual abuse.


Old Camouflage Pick up

How Common Is Necrophilia?

A third question at the end of reading all this you may be asking is "How popular is necrophilia?" Since necrophilia has been considered taboo societally since ancient times, there is not much data about necrophilia or being a 'necrophiliac'. Anna Tippett published a paper in 2023 detailing several known cases of necrophilia, the different types of necrophiliacs, and why there is a need for legal reform regarding necrophilia. In it, she even stated there is no real way to quantify how common it is.


One case in particular about an American embalmer in California exemplifies why necrophilia laws need to be passed. Karen Greenlee stole a hearse and had sex with the corpse in 1979. However, California didn't have any laws regarding necrophilia, so she was only convicted of theft and interfering with a funeral, receiving a fine and 11 days in prison.

Toe tag hanging on woman lying on table in morgue


Michigan has taken a step in the right direction with these bills that Governor Whitmer is expected to sign.

Check Out 8 of Michigan's Weirdest Laws

Yes, these laws are actually on the books in Michigan, make sure you don't break them.

Gallery Credit: Laura Hardy

6 New Laws That Will Take Effect in Michigan in 2024

The new year means a fresh start. Here are some laws that are changing and/or taking effect in 2024.

Gallery Credit: Lauren Gordon

More From 97.9 WGRD