Rep. Keith Gillespie said the measure was prompted by his conversation with the father of a 14-year-old boy who branded himself twice on the torso with a red-hot three-inch nail under the instructions of an 18-year-old during a sleepover.
Gillespie, R-York, told The York Dispatch ( http://bit.ly/Thh0QH) that the action, which the 14-year-old's parents discovered several days later, left third-degree burns on the boy. The father approached the lawmaker after learning that nothing in Pennsylvania law bars branding of young people without parental consent, he said.
"Anyone who has had this done to them is essentially physically marked for life, in addition to having had to undergo what I can only imagine to be a very painful experience," Gillespie said in announcing the bill.
The measure would amend the criminal code regarding tattooing and body piercing of a minor without consent of a parent, making the offense a third-degree misdemeanor for a first offense and a second-degree misdemeanor if a second offense is committed within a year.
"This is a dangerous practice that needs to be outlawed," Gillespie said.
Information from: The York Dispatch, http://www.yorkdispatch.com