A tattoo artist is being charged with six felonies for not informing several sexual partners that he is HIV-positive. Six women filed the complaint against Jason Taufner, with at least one of them testing positive for HIV.
Forty-two-year-old Taufner met the six women who filed a complaint against him between 2017 and 2018 at tattoo shops in Milwaukee and West Allis. During that time, Taufner had sexual relations with the women, with five of them having on-and-off sexual relations with him, and one even living with him for a year.
The woman who lived with him, described as Victim 1, told the investigators that she had once confronted Taufner after an ex-girlfriend of his informed her that he was HIV-positive, but Taufner denied his condition and even accused his ex of lying in order to seek revenge. Similarly, Taufner also told the other women that he was “clean.”
During the investigation, authorities learned that Taufner also faced similar charges in Jefferson County in 2006 and was sent to prison but released in 2015.
Taufner is facing six counts of second-degree recklessly endangering safety.
HIV is a virus that attacks the body’s immune system and spreads via bodily fluids. If left untreated, it will be harder and harder for the body to fight off infections and diseases and may progress to AIDS.
It is important for HIV-positive individuals to share their status to sexual partners and injection drug-use partners so that they can take the proper precautions. In some states, there are even laws that require HIV-positive people to do so. While this may be rather uncomfortable, it allows others to make choices to protect themselves.
Furthermore, it’s also important for HIV-positive people to share their status with their health care providers, not just to protect the health care provider but also so that the patient may get the proper treatment and care that they require.