Criminal Justice Resources: The Top 50 Strangest Laws

Laws are designed to keep people safe and ensure that order is maintained in a society. There are federal laws, which apply to the entire United States, and there are also state by state laws, which only apply to the residents of that particular state, or to visitors of the state. Some state laws, however, are rather odd and unusual. Many of these laws were created a long time ago and might not be enforced today, but they are still on the books. These weird and sometimes completely confusing laws are often still written in the state’s legislature, but no one really holds the “law breakers” accountable.

  • Alabama

    It is not permitted to playing the game of dominos on Sundays.

  • Alaska

    You cannot wake a bear up in order to take a picture with it in the state of Alaska.

  • Arizona

    According to a law in Tucson, Arizona, women are not allowed to wear pants.

  • Arkansas

    Men can beat their wives, but only once per month in Arkansas.

  • California

    Mousetraps cannot be used in California without an official hunting license.

  • Colorado

    In Pueblo, Colorado, dandelions cannot be grown within the city limits.

  • Connecticut

    Dogs cannot get an education in Hartford, Connecticut.

  • Delaware

    A marriage can be annulled if the marriage occurred because of a dare.

  • Florida

    It is against the law to imitate an animal in the city of Miami.

  • Georgia

    Barbers cannot advertise the price of a haircut or any other services in the state of Georgia.

  • Hawaii

    Ironically, the laws of Hawaii say you cannot appear in public wearing only swimming trunks.

  • Idaho

    If you’re giving your sweetheart a box of candy in Idaho, it must weigh more than 50 pounds.

  • Illinois

    It is very clearly stated that all cars in Illinois must be driven with a steering wheel included.

  • Indiana

    In South Bend, Indiana, monkeys cannot smoke cigarettes.

  • Iowa

    No one can be charged an admission cost to see a one-armed piano player in the state of Iowa.

  • Kansas

    Cherry pie a la mode cannot be served on Sundays in Kansas.

  • Kentucky

    Kentucky law states that people must bathe at least once per year.

  • Louisiana

    Gargling in public is illegal in Louisiana.

  • Maine

    You cannot win more than three dollars from gambling in the state of Maine.

  • Maryland

    Oysters must be treated properly in Maryland by law.

  • Massachusetts

    Tomatoes are not permitted in clam chowder in the state of Massachusetts.

  • Michigan

    A woman’s hair is her husband’s legal property in Michigan.

  • Minnesota

    Women impersonating Santa Claus can face up to thirty days in prison.

  • Mississippi

    You cannot kill your “servant” in Mississippi.

  • Missouri

    Men must have permits to shave in the state of Missouri.

  • Montana

    Wives cannot open their husbands’ mail or else they face felony charges.

  • Nebraska

    Soup must be made at the same time bartenders serve beer in Nebraska.

  • Nevada

    Camels cannot be driven on the highway in Nevada.

  • New Hampshire

    You cannot check into a hotel under a false name in New Hampshire.

  • New Jersey

    Forget buying cabbage on Sunday in New Jersey: it’s illegal!

  • New Mexico

    The city of Carlsbad has banned the Miriam-Webster collegiate dictionary.

  • New York

    It is illegal in New York to throw a ball at a person’s head for fun.

  • North Carolina

    The city of Ashland prohibits public sneezing on city streets.

  • North Dakota

    You cannot fall asleep with your shoes still on in North Dakota.

  • Ohio

    In the state of Ohio you cannot have a bear without a license.

  • Oklahoma

    No ugly or funny faces shall be made at dogs in the state of Oklahoma.

  • Oregon

    No one can bathe without wearing acceptable clothing that covers their body from the neck to their knees.

  • Pennsylvania

    Marriages cannot be performed if either the bride or groom is drunk.

  • Rhode Island

    It is illegal to throw pickle juice on a trolley in Rhode Island.

  • South Carolina

    Everyone living in South Carolina must take their gun to church with them.

  • South Dakota

    You cannot fall asleep while in a cheese factory in South Dakota.

  • Tennessee

    You are not allowed to drive and sleep in the state of Tennessee.

  • Texas

    In the state of Texas, no one is allowed to have a pair of pliers on them at any time.

  • Utah

    All birds are granted the right of way on highways in Utah.

  • Vermont

    You must not deny that God exists in Vermont.

  • Virginia

    In Richmond, Virginia, it’s illegal to flip a coin to determine who will buy the coffee.

  • Washington

    It’s against the law to pretend your parents are rich in Washington state.

  • West Virginia

    No adults allowed: In the state of West Virginia, only babies are allowed to ride in baby carriages.

  • Wisconsin

    There will be no kissing on trains in Wisconsin!

  • Wyoming

    Women cannot stand within five feet of a bar.

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