Back in 2005, Dave Chappelle took on the trial of Michael Jackson in his sketch comedy program Chappelle’s Show, with the punchline focusing on the appearance of, well….
“What if I told you that the accusers correctly described Mr. Jackson’s penis?” asks an unnamed prosecutor.
“Sir, I have never seen Michael’s alleged penis, but I bet you that I could describe it,” Chappelle replies, grinning. “Let me guess. There’s a head, a shaft, some balls, hair — maybe pressed, permed hair, with some glitter sprinkled on it.”
“That’s correct,” the prosecutor admits, sheepishly.
As it turns out, having your dick dissected (not literally) in court proceedings isn’t just great material for satire. A wide variety of sex crimes, ranging from forcible rape to various forms of illegal touching, can make it necessary to shine a light (literally) on an accused man’s wanker. Chappelle was right to joke that, all in all, most dicks are more alike than they are unique. But for people who have unusual markings, or er, uniquely shaped endowments, the court-mandated dick exam can be a turning point for a case.
And while it may seem hugely invasive of a defendant’s privacy, a dick exam and dick pic is something most judges will readily grant, says Jonathan Mandel, a criminal defense lawyer in L.A. with experience as a prosecutor. “The catch is that there’s gotta be something unique about the dick that can be distinguished visually. If the guy has a six-foot schlong, that’s unique. Maybe a scar, only one ball, et cetera,” Mandel explains. “And it has to be relevant to the case. The only real way is that an alleged victim is stating a description of it, and that the penis is obviously related to the crime. Like a forcible rape involving a stranger — the victim would have never had a chance to see the penis otherwise, right?”
Those who think they can dodge a dick exam by pleading the Fifth Amendment or a similar legal defense probably aren’t going to win, Mandel adds. You cannot be forced to verbally testify and describe your dick and balls in court, but the court can simply demand a collection of physical evidence, as they would with fingerprints or tattoos that show a gang affiliation, for instance. “We see it, too, with the court having the right to collect a handwriting sample or a recording of the way you speak,” Mandel says. “One could argue these are invasive, but judges routinely give that without much resistance.”
The annals of recent court cases involving dicks run a fascinating gamut, from jurors being grossed out by a smelly cock to debate on the “micro-penis” rape defense. Here then is a sampling of famous times when a dude on trial for a sex crime had his dick investigated by the judge and jury (and one time when he didn’t).
The Time Michael Jackson’s Dick Became a National Debate
Jackson went from famous to infamous in 1993, when he was first accused of molesting a young teenage boy named Jordan Chandler. The duo had grown close, with Chandler often sleeping over at Jackson’s Neverland Ranch, which led to accusations that Jackson was forcing sexual acts on the teen. There is much to unpack about the case, which involved some seriously shady behavior from Jordan’s father, Evan Chandler, suggesting this accusation was more about extorting money than getting justice for a crime.
The crux of the case, however, was Jordan’s testimony to Officer Deborah Linden on the appearance of Jackson’s dick. He drew a small diagram of the shape of Jackson’s penis, and noted, “Michael is circumcised. He has short pubic hair. His testicles are marked with pink and brown marks. Like a cow, not white but pink color.”
This was enough to warrant a strip search of Jackson on Dec. 20, 1993, at Neverland Ranch. A huge gaggle of people, including Santa Barbara District Attorney Tom Sneddon, a detective, a photographer and a doctor, plus Jackson’s own legal staff, doctor and bodyguard, all showed up. Most of them agreed to leave the room for the actual exam, during which Jackson stood on a platform for 25 minutes while being photographed from all angles.
The big finding was that Jackson, unlike Jordan’s testimony, did not have a circumsized penis, and there was little other evidence to prove sexual misconduct. Regardless, Jackson chose to settle in January 1994 for $22 million rather than drag the case out in civil court, and while the settlement didn’t prevent the Chandlers from pursuing a criminal case, no criminal charges were ever filed.
Jordan Chandler only did one interview with authorities after the settlement, and refused to testify ever again, even when he was called as a witness in the 2005 trial for more molestation accusations against Jackson.
The Time the Court Couldn’t Stop Talking About a Giant, Smelly Dick
The charges against Eugenio Perez were, frankly, horrifying. In his time as a correctional officer at Metropolitan Detention Center in New York, Perez forced female inmates to give him oral sex or expose themselves while he masturbated. He was convicted in May and faces life in prison, thanks in part to the lengthy discussion in trial about his dick.
Three of the five victims gave accurate, matching descriptions of the member, commenting on both its large size and sharp curvature, which was confirmed by photographs taken by authorities. Disgustingly, the victims also testified that it smelled awful. “He wasn’t circumcised. It was big, and it was like a hook… It was humongous and it curved,” a 38-year-old victim told the court. “If it didn’t stink, I would have been all over that shit.”
“It was so big, I wanted to throw up,” added another victim, 50. “It had a smell like he didn’t wash or take a shower… it was a really strong smell.”
It’s understandable that some inmates might not want to shower on a daily basis, but what excuse did Perez have? He’ll have plenty of time to mull over what went wrong while stuck behind bars.
The Time a Dude Literally Whipped Out His Dick In Court
The only warning Connecticut Judge Elpidio Vitale gave to the jury was that they were about to witness “non-testimonial” evidence that was “sensitive in nature and highly personal.” So imagine the jury’s surprise when defendant Desmond James, 26, sauntered out to the middle of the courtroom, pulled down his pants, lifted his shirt and flopped out his wang for the whole room to see, standing still and wordless for 10 full seconds.
James was accused of forcibly raping a woman six years ago, and the woman had testified that she was raped by a man whose penis was lighter than the rest of his skin. James’ defense attorney, Todd Bussert, told the jury that James’ penis was actually darker, and the judge allowed James to expose himself to prove it. “You saw a penis that’s darker than the rest of his skin,” Bussert declared after the showing. “For that reason alone, you must acquit.”
New Haven prosecutor Stacy Miranda took objection to that statement (“It’s six years later… What was his manscaping like at the time? What light was shining on it?”), but ultimately, the jury chose to acquit James. The victory gave his attorney the opportunity to quip to the New York Post, “If it’s not the light one, it’s not the right one.”
The Time a Dude Got His Tiny Dick Measured
Think it’s bad enough for a bunch of strangers to discuss your dick and look at pictures of it? Well, it gets weirder if you’re Canadian man Jacques Rouschop, who found himself declaring again and again in court that his dick is small. Like, tiny. Like so tiny that he couldn’t have raped someone.
Rouschop had already been convicted of sex crimes in 1991 and 2005, and had a long rap sheet, so his 2016 case for aggravated sexual assault and choking of two sex workers wasn’t looking good. The women didn’t recall that he had an unusually small penis, but the court sent a nurse examiner to Rouschop’s jail cell to measure his pecker, finding that it was one inch flaccid and two inches fully erect. “I have the penis of a seven-year-old,” Rouschop testified, after noting that a botched surgical procedure was to blame. “I’m not making this up. I can whip it out and show you.”
Ontario Superior Court Justice Robert Smith wasn’t having it: “I’m not agreeing to allow you to whip it out,” he replied. After a three-week trial, the jury took less than 24 hours to come to a verdict, rejecting his micro-dick defense and finding Rouschop guilty on all counts.
The Time Serial Rapist Darren Sharper Had to Agree to ‘Dick Polygraphs’
Ex-NFL player Sharper raped at least nine women in four separate states over three years, using drugs to knock out many of his victims and render their memories less reliable, traveling often to dodge attention and leveraging his considerable wealth and fame, which made prosecutors less willing to push charges without rock-solid evidence.
He was sentenced to 20 years of prison in 2016, but is only serving 9 years of that term as part of a plea deal, with release in 2025. The upside is that Sharper will be labeled a sex offender and monitored closely when he’s out of prison and on parole in California; then he’ll be transferred to Arizona to be on probation for the rest of his life. He’ll be tracked by GPS at all times, and won’t be allowed to drink alcohol, go to any bars, use online dating apps or travel more than 50 miles from his home without state approval.
His dick, meanwhile, comes into play with a piece of tech called the “penis plethysmograph.” Basically a dick lie detector, the plethysmograph involves placing a band around the penis that can measure blood flow, and thus, arousal. For the rest of his life, Sharper will have to consent to plethysmograph tests, which involve a series of flashing sexual images or videos to test what gets him off.
There’s considerable controversy around the lack of reliability of this test, as with traditional polygraphs, and it’s unclear what the results would be used for in Sharper’s case (it’s often used in sex-offender treatment programs). Also, as one behavioral technician who has administered the exam testified, men also try mightily to deceive the test. “Excessive masturbation prior to. Masturbation during. Use of drugs or alcohol prior to. Actual touching of the gauge. Touching of themselves. … Not listening to the tape. Negative self-thoughts,” technician Mike Parsons told a Kansas court in 2000. “There’s mumbling, talking to their penis, singing songs.”
Then again, anything that can track whether Sharper is feeling the urge to rape again is probably a good thing, right?
The Time Teflon Bill *Didn’t* Get His Dick Examined
Paula Jones told authorities that Clinton had exposed himself to her and demanded oral sex in a Little Rock, Ark., hotel room in 1991. She testified she didn’t see just a normal dick, but one that could be suffering from Peyronie’s Disease, a condition that causes an erection to curve sharply upward.
Like some of the cases we’ve already discussed, it seems like this would be a relevant reason to call for an exam of Clinton’s dick — except it never happened. Media was abuzz with the possibility in 1997, but according to law experts, the fact that Clinton was president made it extremely difficult to justify an exam. Georgetown University law professor Paul Rothstein even noted to the New York Daily News that a private citizen would likely be ordered to undergo an exam under normal court procedures, but that in Clinton’s case, “the indignity and embarrassment to the government of the United States … may weigh heavily against anything being done along these lines.”
Thus, we come to a conclusion: Don’t want your dick photographed, measured or whipped out in court? Just become the President of the United States.