Adventures in Lawyering: The Porn Star


Funny stories about being an attorney | The Champagne Supernova

I’ve got some crazy lawyer stories. This is the first in a series of installments called “Adventures in Lawyering.” 

Being an attorney ain’t all glitz and glamour.

In fact, it usually isn’t.

I’ve been practicing for almost a decade and can’t tell you the number of times I’ve sloshed through mud and debris at a construction site.

Or the times I’ve had to sift through gory crime scene photographs and then get on an unrelated conference call five minutes later hoping the person on the other end didn’t know I had been crying (or dry heaving).

The times I’ve received a plaintiff’s gynecology records in response to a subpoena and literally read their handwritten answer of “occasionally” when asked for their sex in an initial patient intake sheet.

Or the time I went to a junk yard to examine a vehicle that had been involved in a fatal accident the night before. The junk yard worker, through his toothless mouth, looked at me and said:

Smell that smell? 

Yes, sir. (Gagging.) It’s putrid.

That’s brain. Smell it once and you never forget. 

Trust me, I’ll never forget.

Autopsy photos.

Check.

Stucco density reports.

Check.

Laboratory results.

Check.

Dealing with irrational south Florida Rambo lawyers.

Check.

Spending time in courthouses where the other individuals walking through the security line made “The People of Wal-Mart” seem like the Rockefellers.

Check.

One of the more noteworthy “lawyer stories” occurred rather recently. This, ladies and gents, is the true tale of The Porn Star.

I once had a case where I represented a major trucking company that was sued by a young man who alleged he was rear-ended (pun intended) on an interstate near Miami. As a result of the accident, he claimed to have debilitating neck and back injuries that precluded him from maintaining gainful employment and warranted surgery in the future.

He wanted my client to pay him several hundred thousand dollars in damages.

So the investigation and discovery process began.

Before I go further, what many lay people don’t realize when initiating a lawsuit is that when you claim you are injured as a result of another person’s negligence, you are opening up your entire medical history to the other side.

You aren’t required to disclose only the doctors who treated you in connection with the accident at issue in the lawsuit. You have to disclose the names of all medical providers you have seen in the past, and courts usually agree that a ten-year timeframe is reasonable.

Why is the prior medical history relevant? Let’s say a plaintiff is seeking damages for headaches he or she claims began after an accident and adamantly denies they existed before. A defendant is entitled to assess the truth of this contention by reviewing other unrelated records to ensure the plaintiff didn’t report to his dentist, for instance, that he was suffering from a ten-year history of migraines.

Believe me, it happens all the time.

What does this mean?

The wart you complained about that you had “down there” to your OB?

Other side will know about it.

Your history of abortions?

Other side will know about it.

Your third nipple?

Other side will know about it.

You and your spouse have an open marriage and now you’re concerned about a funky odor?

Other side will know about it.

[These are all things I’ve seen in peoples’ medical records.]

Accordingly, any decent defense attorney will send subpoenas to all of a plaintiff’s medical providers- as well as pharmacies, car and health insurance companies, and employers- for a plaintiff’s chart or file. The attorney will then go through these records with a fine-tooth comb to determine whether the plaintiff is indeed injured and whether the injuries were truly related to the subject accident or to something else.

Back to the porn star. 

As I was wading through this particular man’s medical records, I noticed he wrote on an initial patient intake sheet at his chiropractor’s office that he was employed as an “entertainer” for a company called Reality Kings.

This is weird, I thought. He reported in his Answers to Interrogatories that he worked as a clerk at an auto parts store. 

So I googled “Reality Kings” and up popped a blocker on my work computer telling me that I couldn’t access the site.

Pornography.

After discussing the issue with the partner assigned to the case (e.g. The Bossman), I called my firm’s computer HelpDesk and awkwardly asked that they remove the block from my computer, and explained that I needed to watch some videos of one of my plaintiffs before his upcoming deposition.

The guy on the other end of the phone said this has happened before (!!!) and they would remove the restriction with an agreement that I would watch any videos with my office door closed.

Good lord.

Let’s just say that after a few minutes, I found this plaintiff when I recognized him from the photo on his driver’s license, discovered that he had a “stage name,” and was featured in multiple pornographic videos that were uploaded after the date of his accident. These videos clearly and absolutely undermined his assertions that he had neck and back problems.

The dude was doing things with women that would be impossible if one truly had neck and back pain. And maybe he can chock it up to good acting, but he absolutely appeared to be enjoying himself and was not wincing or grimacing in pain.

(And while I refer to this guy as a Porn Star, you can be certain he was a Z-lister.)

The videos were filthy.

Disgusting.

Appalling.

After a few minutes of watching the videos, I felt like I needed to go to church, eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, and then watch some Disney movies to clean up my troubled mind.

So I did what any rational person in this situation would do. I called my assistant and another attorney into the office to watch the videos and confirm the guy in the videos was the same guy on the driver’s license.

We giggled like children. We blushed. We talked about it for days afterward. We couldn’t believe watching porn was part of our “billable hours.” (Note: this was approved by the client, who was unamused by this plaintiff’s shenanigans.)

Fast forward a week later. I had to travel to south Florida to take this guy’s deposition.

I knew he was in the porn industry. He thought I thought he was a clerk in an auto parts store.

When he came into the room, it was hard for me to look him in the eye.

After all, I’d seen him naked.

Clothed, he was just a scrawny guy with a buzzed haircut and a pierced eyebrow.

But man, was he slick. He tried to be manipulative and it was clear his attorney coached him about what to say in case his job came up.

He was evasive enough without lying. The deposition went something like this:

Are you employed?

Yes.

Where?

A company called Reality Kings.

What’s Reality Kings?

It’s an entertainment business that does everything from advertising, to marketing, to SEO on the web… things like that.

What is your job title and what do you do for them?

I don’t really have a title. I just show up for work and do whatever my boss tells me to do, which can range from promoting movies, to handing out flyers, to attending special events, things like that.

Do you appear in any movies?

Sometimes, yes.

What are these movies about?

Really anything. They can be about anything. Home improvement, travel, neighbors.

Are these movies cartoons or suitable for kids?

[Nervous laughter] No, no definitely not for kids.

What are they rated?

Ma’am, I don’t know- I’m not involved in the rating system.

[Eew. He called me “Ma’am”]

At this point, I realized I was going nowhere and needed to cut right to the chase.

[Leaning forward] Are the movies pornography?

[Beads of sweat pouring off his head] Some of them are, yes.

[Feeling like a grandmother with this next question because I didn’t know a more direct way to say it] Do you have intercourse with other people in these videos?

Sometimes, yes.

His lawyer asked for a break and called his client outside of the room. I was secretly disappointed that the plaintiff told the truth because I wanted him to blatantly lie about his involvement in the porn industry and then be able to file a Motion to Dismiss attaching video clips of the plaintiff in “all his glory” doing things that contradicted his reports of neck and back pain.

I wanted him to testify that he worked as an auto parts clerk and that he lived a life of such agonizing pain that all he does is go to work and sit home in a couch unable to walk around or fend for himself because of all the pain.

To no avail.

I don’t know what became of this guy.  A few months after the deposition, he fired his own lawyer. I subsequently accepted a part-time position at another firm and was never able to see the case through, but it is my understanding the case was dismissed after the plaintiff failed to obtain a new lawyer and never responded to overdue discovery.

Cheers to an adventure in lawyering!

Have any crazy stories of your own? Love to read them in the comments.

    11 Comments on Adventures in Lawyering: The Porn Star

    1. Miriam
      July 13, 2017 at 7:06 pm (4 months ago)

      Too funny. I laughed out loud about the occasional sex but that wasn’t even the climax (pun intended)!!

      Reply
    2. Judy
      July 13, 2017 at 6:18 pm (4 months ago)

      Loved reading this and hope this series becomes a regular. It certainly made me smile. Gives me a greater appreciation for what attorneys have to do as part of their jobs. It certainly isn’t all glamour for sure! I’ll bet there are blog readers out there that could share a great story or two.

      Reply
    3. Julie Borm
      July 13, 2017 at 4:52 pm (4 months ago)

      Oh my goodness – I have had some similar instances in PR regarding what I had to watch/investigate. I can never handle those types of assignments without giggling either. But porn … you win. That was quite a hilarious story!

      Reply
    4. Angie Orth
      July 13, 2017 at 11:34 am (4 months ago)

      Hilar! Looking forward to more of these lawyering adventures!

      Reply
    5. Tove Maren
      July 13, 2017 at 1:25 am (4 months ago)

      I am dying laughing… hats off to you for doing a good investigative job!

      Reply
    6. Sandi
      July 12, 2017 at 10:17 pm (4 months ago)

      Hilarious! Great read. 🤣

      Reply
    7. Emily
      July 12, 2017 at 11:44 am (4 months ago)

      Only you!!

      Reply
    8. Ginny
      July 12, 2017 at 11:36 am (4 months ago)

      I’m so disgusted by all of these people who treat getting in a car accident (even one that is THEIR FAULT) like winning the lottery. It’s the reason all of our insurance rates are higher. I’m so glad this jerk (presumably) didn’t get a payout.

      Reply
      • jenniferdaku
        July 12, 2017 at 2:51 pm (4 months ago)

        Me too. One word: Karma.

        Reply
    9. Michelle Murray
      July 12, 2017 at 1:07 am (4 months ago)

      Great series to feature on your blog. love this story and looking forward to many more

      Reply
    10. Melissa
      July 11, 2017 at 10:53 pm (4 months ago)

      This was such a fun read! I wonder what ever became of that porn star!

      Reply

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *