Bestiality and zoophilia are widely misunderstood forms of sexual deviance
Animal sex abuse occurs all over the world and is often connected to other criminal behavior
Laws vary widely with penalties in the U.S. ranging from 30 days to 20 years
Research on this issue is growing, and consultation and specialized training are availble
There is no escape - bestiality is a form of sexual abuse
similar to rape or incest
DURANGO, CO - September 24, 2021
In late June, Jonah Barrett-Lesko, 26 was caught on surveillance cam attempting to have sex with a horse being boarded at the local fairgrounds. Barrett-Lesko initially fled the scene, leaving behind a backpack containing burglarly tools. In a public statement Detective Tony Meraz said "This case is very concerning based on the sexually deviant behavior of the suspect. We believe there is a public safety concern."
After returning to the homeless encampment where he was living, Barrett-Lesko bragged about his encounter to several people, and within a week was arrested by Durango PD.
Barrett-Lesko, already well known to the police, was charged with animal cruelty and possession of burglary tools. As a result of plea bargaining, however, the animal cruelty charges were dropped and Barrett-Lesko pleaded guilty to trespassing on multiple properties.
This week, while serving time in the county jail on trespassing charges. by climbing over a wall in the rec yard.
What's disturbing about this case is not Barrett-Lesko's ability to elude police; it's that the police recognized the seriousness of the crime, but the judicial system didn't feel the same way. Sadly, cases of animal sexual abuse - particularly when the abuse involves horses - are seldom fully prosecuted. Allowing a sexual deviant to plead to tresapassing is equivalent to letting a child molester plead to jaywalking instead.
Photo by Durango PD -
Jonah Barrett-Lesko, mugshot September 2021