BMW “Persistent Erection” Lawsuit Dismissed

Testimony Fails to Stand Up

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The Superior Court of San Francisco has dismissed lawsuits against BMW and Corbin-Pacific Inc. brought on by a man who claimed a motorcycle ride gave him an erection that lasted for several months. The story made headlines and drew much ridicule after the man said vibrations from his 1993 BMW K1100RS and Corbin aftermarket seat resulted in a case of priapism, a condition in which a penis remains erect for a prolonged period of time.

It probably feels incredibly painful once the novelty has worn off.

In the case of Henry Wolf vs. BMW of North America and Corbin-Pacific, judge James J. McBride granted the defendants’ motion for non-suit, essentially ruling the plaintiff did not present enough evidence to support his case.

The court tossed out portions of video testimony of Dr. Jonathan Rutchik, a neurologist introduced by the plaintiff, who opined it is possible vibrations from a motorcycle could cause priapism, citing studies conducted in Japan. The court deemed those studies irrelevant to the case and ruled Dr. Rutchik’s opinions were speculative “not supported by a specific causation for plaintiff’s injury.”

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The court also struck down evidence from a urologist, Dr. Jack McAninch, who testified that the plaintiff’s injuries were consistent with a motorcycle ride. The court accepted McAninch’s testimony that the plaintiff did suffer from priapism but ruled the doctor was not qualified to offer an opinion on whether the mechanics of Wolf’s BMW motorcycle were the direct cause.

In striking down testimony from two key witnesses, the court ruled the plaintiff did not have enough evidence to convince a jury that riding the motorcycle caused his priapism.

The defendants meanwhile, presented as evidence testimony from the K1100RS’ former owner prior to Wolf, the person who later purchased the motorcycle from Wolf, and Mike Corbin, chief executive officer of Corbin-Pacific.

[Source: San Francisco Superior Court]

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