Loving v. Virginia

388 U.S. 1 (1967)


Loving (D), a white man, and Jeter (D), a black woman, were married in the District of Columbia, although they lived in Virginia. A Virginia statute barred interracial marriage, making it a felony for any white person to intermarry with a colored person or any colored person to intermarry with a white person. Ds were indicted, and the trial court sentenced them to 25 years in jail, but suspended the sentence on the condition that they left the state. The Supreme Court of Appeals of Virginia upheld the statute's constitutionality, holding that it served legitimate state purposes of preserving the racial integrity of its citizens and preventing corruption of blood, the creation of a mongrel breed of citizens, and the obliteration of racial pride. Virginia (P) claimed that all races were treated the same under the statute, so there was no discrimination.