Image credit: iStock Image credit: iStock

A man in the US has pleaded guilty to having sex with a donkey last year. Gideon Swartzentruber was working as a farmhand in Neillsville, Wisconsin when the incident happened.

Mr Swartzentruber was caught in the act of sexual gratification with an animal by the donkey's owner. He claimed that the donkey wasn't harmed and that he had not done anything like this before.

According to a detective on the case, the defendant said that he had touched the donkey and was just playing around being a bit crazy. When asked why he had proceeded to have intercourse with the donkey, Mr Swartzentruber said that his "privates were out of control" and he "got crazy and carried away", reports the Marshfield Herald News.   

Mr Swartzentruber was sacked from his farm job and reported to police, leading to an appearance in court. Clark County Circuit Judge Jon Counsell ordered him to pay a fine of $443 (£300), placed him on probation and ordered him to have therapy.

Wisconsin law states that anyone found guilty of having sex with an animal can be subject to a jail sentence of up to nine months and be handed a fine of up to $10,000. It seems the judge did not want to be so harsh with the 20-year-old for his first offence.   

However, following the initial sentence, Mr Swartzentruber pleaded with the judge to imprison him on December 3oth 2015. This led to Judge Counsell sentencing him to 30 days in jail instead.

The defendant did not say in open court why he wanted a jail sentence rather than the fine, probation and therapy. He also represented himself in court and did not consult a lawyer since being charged for the offence.

Beastiality is illegal in just 16 states across the US, with calls being made for states without laws that protect animals from the act to address the issue. While some states have animal cruelty laws in place, it is not always clear whether this covers the act of beastiality.