- For Attorneys
The following is a Virginia statute:
§ 18.2-417. Slander and libel. —
Any person who shall falsely utter and speak, or falsely write and
publish, of and concerning any female of chaste character, any words
derogatory of such female's character for virtue and chastity, or
imputing to such female acts not virtuous and chaste, or who shall
falsely utter and speak, or falsely write and publish, of and concerning
another person, any words which from their usual construction and common
acceptation are construed as insults and tend to violence and breach of
the peace or shall use grossly insulting language to any female of good
character or reputation, shall be guilty of a Class 3 misdemeanor.
The defendant shall be entitled to prove upon trial in mitigation of
the punishment, the provocation which induced the libelous or slanderous
words, or any other fact or circumstance tending to disprove malice, or
lessen the criminality of the offense.