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Randy Newsham's Bad Day | Exotic Dancer Slips, Litigates and Loses

One can just imagine the reaction of Mr. Justice Brown when Newsham v. Canwest Trade Shows, fell on his lap, no pun intended.

It involved the saga of one Randyll "Randy" Adam Newsham. Newsham is (was?) a male exotic dancer, a male stripper. The plaintiff’s company name was stated to be “Sly Strippers”. Internet records show that a "Randy Sly" of Abbotsford, British Columbia owns, a porn site which purports to serve as a hiring agency for, well, people who do this type of thing.

One chilly Saturday night, January 13th, back in 2007, the Vancouver Convention and Exhibition Centre was hosting an adult-only show with a somewhat self-explanatory title: the Naughty but Nice Sex Show. Not sure who it would attract but we can't officially care because, to paraphrase a now dead Canadian prime minister:

"There's no place for the state in the Naughty But Nice Sex Shows of the nation."

Randy Newsham later swore under oath that he did not notice the oily substances left by the previous performers which Justice Brown later and generously described as "a deposit of body paint left on the stage by earlier exhibitors demonstrating its use".

Newsham enthusiastically hopped onto the carpeted stage, likely to the delirious cheers of his admiring public.

Again, not sure who would pay to watch this kind of stuff but....

Back to the law which needs a bed of facts to rest on in any Court room drama.

Randy the stripper's preparation for his work of art certainly differs from what goes on in the barrister's room at the Courthouse:

"I take off my clothes ... and use baby oil and get all, um, nice and shiny into -- on the skin and everything.  Um, make sure my hair is done, get into my costume, and then basically limber up back stage, do some push ups, just trying to look as good as possible."

While he was prepping for his act, the Naughty But Nice Sex Show show featured body painting girls, fire dancers and can-can girls.

10:40 p.m.: showtime. Newsham hopped up gingerly onto the stage and began his Naughty but Nice Sex Show.

He had planned on a 25 minute show during which he slid around the floor and a stage set of bar tables.

That is when it happened. Gyrating, all sexed-up, playing to the crowd, revealing most if not all of what his mamma gave him to complete strangers for money. He eventually completely removed all of his clothes and was wearing but boxer shorts and black dancing boots. Justice Brown's words:

"To get the attention of the crowd while he is on the main stage during his performance, he does something similar to a dive roll or front handspring. He then works his way off the stage so he can get closer to the audience. During his performance, the plaintiff jumps off and on the stage at least three to five times. When he is not on the stage he goes into the crowd. As he explained, he even jumps up on a number of the tables."

Nice young man.

Suddenly - boom!

He later says he slipped on some substance left on the stage and his right knee buckled. It was an awkward slip but no-one else noticed it, maybe because these shows, like sex which they purport to imitate, can be unpredictable and shaky so any otherwise unusual or sudden move would be taken by a spectator as just part of the show.

In Newsham's own words at trial:

"I kind of caught myself and stood there and my knee -- as I’m -- my right knee, as I’m stepping forward isn’t just -- it’s just kind of locked-up and all of a sudden I just feel 'ah' as I step down to the ground, and I continue doing my show to the end of the song....

"I slid forward and the leg or knee locked -- like went -- when it went straight sliding forward, it straightened out and kind of, like, sort of like flexed or straightened out entirely. And in that straightened state, yeah, it felt like there was a locking kind of. And then as soon as I followed through with my step with the right leg is when I felt the excruciating pain in my knee."

Newsham finished the show and after, reported his slip to the show organizers, receiving some free ice for his troubles.

But there the story did not end. Newsham felt he had been wronged. It was that oily substance.

Nedsham sued in the district of Chilliwack, some sixty miles away from Naughty but Nice Sex Show. He sued everything that moved including Canwest Trade Shows Inc., Darryl Rosengreen, Canada Place Corporation, Vancouver Convention & Exhibition Centre and two very mysterious defendants known simply as "ABC Inc." and the ubiquitous and very litigious "John Doe".

The slightly salacious component of his analysis completed, Justice Brown moved into the  law and ultimately dismissed the dancer's claim, mainly because there was no evidence of a slippery substance that Randy says he must of slipped on. No one else saw him slip or even stumble, no-one else observed any slippery substance on the dance floor before or after the alleged slip.

It was all too speculative.

The real kicker for Justice Brown was a pre-existing right knee injury. This medical report, produced at trial, did Newman in for good:

"Thank you very much for asking me to see Randy Newsham who is a very pleasant 29, almost 30-year-old gentleman. He is a dancer and was doing a particular move several days ago when his right knee locked. He has been having intermittent episodes of locking in his knee for the last couple of years. He has never had any problems with instability.

"He had a significant patellar fracture in 1998 that required repair. He then had a patellar tendon rupture which he then underwent repair in 1999. He had the figure-of-eight wire removed in the third operation. Since then he has had occasional patellofemoral discomfort, but he has never had any significant problems with his knee."

One will never know if Newsham's was merely presenting a new sham or not to the Court. The Court isn't interested in, nor can it, determine ultimate truth - only God can see all and judge all.

All a court of law can do it put a plaintiff to the fairly straight-forward task of proving its case on a balance of probability.

When this exotic dancer tried the manoeuvre in the Chilliwack Law Courts, he not only slipped again, but this time he fell too ... and is now required to pay costs.

Naughty but nice.

Legal advice: stay away from baby oil if you're dancing practically nude and your knees are suspect.


Posted in Current Events, Personal Injury and Tort Law

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