Montana Code Annotated 2019



Part 2. Offensive, Indecent, and Inhumane Conduct

Desecration Of Flags

45-8-215. Desecration of flags. (1) In this section, the term "flag" means anything that is or purports to be the official flag of the United States, the United States shield, the United States coat of arms, the Montana state flag, or a copy, picture, or representation of any of the described articles.

(2) A person commits the offense of desecration of flags if the person purposely or knowingly:

(a) publicly mutilates, defiles, or casts contempt upon the flag;

(b) places on or attaches to the flag any work, mark, design, or advertisement not properly a part of the flag or exposes to public view a flag so altered;

(c) manufactures or exposes to public view an article of merchandise or a wrapper or receptacle for merchandise upon which the flag is depicted; or

(d) uses the flag for commercial advertising purposes.

(3) A person convicted of the offense of desecration of flags shall be imprisoned in the state prison for any term not to exceed 10 years or be fined an amount not to exceed $50,000, or both.

(4) This section does not apply to flags depicted on written or printed documents or periodicals or on stationery, ornaments, pictures, or jewelry if there are not unauthorized words or designs on the flags and if the flag is not connected with any advertisement.

History: En. 94-7-502 by Sec. 1, Ch. 513, L. 1973; R.C.M. 1947, 94-7-502; amd. Sec. 7, Ch. 198, L. 1981; amd. Sec. 1707, Ch. 56, L. 2009.