Kink & BDSM

Death By Sex: 5 Of The Most Unusual Sex-Related Deaths

October 7, 2013 by Justin Lehmiller


Death can come any time, any place…even in the bedroom. It’s rare, but people sometime die during sexual activity, including both masturbation and partnered sex. Most research on this topic has focused on how there is an elevated risk of heart attacks during sex, but believe it or not, that’s far from the only reason that some people have died while attempting to “get it on.” In this article, we’ll take a look at five of the most unusual sex-related deaths. Actually, let’s make that four deaths and one case of attempted murder by sex.

5. Death by horse sex. On July 2, 2005, a man in Washington state died after a visit to a local “animal brothel,” a farm where people who have a sexual interest in animals can go and act out their sexual fantasies. What happened? Apparently, he received anal sex from a horse, which caused his colon to rupture and led to a deadly case of peritonitis. The death was ruled an accident, but the media attention surrounding the story led the Washington legislature to quickly pass a law banning sex with animals in that state. Many people are surprised to learn that not all U.S. states have legal bans on sex with animals (as of this writing, it appears that just 33 of the 50 states have such laws on the books). To learn more about the psychological characteristics of people who have sex with animals, check out this article.

4. Death by choking on a sex toy. In 2011, an Ohio man died as a result of choking on a sex toy attached to a gag during an act of sadomasochism gone awry. Apparently, the man had been tied to the bed face down with handcuffs and chains. Not only was he gagged, but he was also wearing a leather mask that had the mouth and eye holes zipped shut. All of this was reportedly done at the man’s request, and the person who assisted with the bondage was not present when he died (the assistant left, at which point other “participants” were supposed to arrive). An investigation into the death is still underway, but for the time being, authorities believe it was an accident that occurred during consensual sexual activity and nobody has been charged.

3. Death by electric nipple clamps. In a 2008 case that shocked a small Pennsylvania town, a man called 911 to report that his wife had been electrocuted. He initially told police that his wife had been drying her hair after showering when it happened; however, it was later revealed that she was wearing nipple clamps attached to an electrical strip, which the husband used to provide her with a series of electric shocks. The husband claimed that they were into “kinky sex” and that her resulting death was accidental; however, the jury didn’t completely buy his story and felt that he acted negligently. He was eventually convicted of third-degree murder and sentenced to 20-40 years in prison.

2. Attempted murder by poison vagina. Earlier this year, several media outlets reported on the case of a Brazilian woman who attempted to murder her husband with a most unusual weapon: a poison-laced vagina. After filling her nether regions with poison, she asked her husband to perform oral sex; however, things didn’t go according to plan because she apparently didn’t realize that putting poison inside her body would actually poison her (just so you know, the vaginal walls are pretty absorbent). Ironically, the husband ended up saving his wife’s life by taking her to the hospital for treatment.

1. Death by dog semen. On October 7, 2008, a woman in Ireland died after having sexual intercourse with a German shepherd dog. The woman met the dog’s owner in an animal sex chatroom, which is how the encounter was initially arranged. However, it appears that she was allergic to the dog’s semen, which led to anaphylaxis (a severe allergic reaction) and, ultimately, her death. The courts ruled that the dog’s owner was innocent of any wrongdoing in the woman’s death because she participated in the activity on her own accord; however, the resulting publicity caused the owner to lose his job and led him to be disowned by his family.

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Image Source: iStockphoto

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Written by
Dr. Justin Lehmiller
Founder & Owner of Sex and Psychology

Dr. Justin Lehmiller is a social psychologist and Research Fellow at The Kinsey Institute. He runs the Sex and Psychology blog and podcast and is author of the popular book Tell Me What You Want. Dr. Lehmiller is an award-winning educator, and a prolific researcher who has published more than 50 academic works.

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