Bryan Kocis

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Bryan Kocis
Born Bryan Charles Kocis
(1962-05-28)May 28, 1962
Fairbanks, Alaska
Died January 24, 2007(2007-01-24) (aged 44)
Dallas Township, Pennsylvania
Cause of death Death by stabbing
Other names Bryan Phillips
Occupation Pornographer
Known for Cobra Video founder
Brent Corrigan controversy
Publicized death

Bryan Charles Kocis (May 28, 1962 – January 24, 2007),[1] also known as Bryan Phillips, was a director of gay pornographic films and founder of Cobra Video, a gay porn film studio.[2][3] Kocis was murdered at his Dallas Township, Pennsylvania home on January 24, 2007; arson was used in an attempt to disguise the circumstances of his death. Two escorts, Harlow Cuadra and Joseph Kerekes, were charged and convicted for Kocis' murder and subsequently given a sentence of life imprisonment without any possibility of parole.

Early life[edit]

Bryan Charles Kocis was raised in Larksville, Pennsylvania, the first son of Michael and Joyce Kocis. His childhood was mostly happy and he was especially close to his sister, Melody.[citation needed] He attended Wyoming Valley West High School winning several scholarships, graduating with honors in 1980.[citation needed] He graduated from Rochester Institute of Technology, after which he worked as a medical photographer for a local eye doctor.[4]

Career[edit]

After he left the medical photography business, he tried several business ventures, all of which failed. In 2001, he was involved in a cellular phone venture. After being charged with sexual assault on a 15-year-old boy,[3] he was removed as a partner in that venture, and established Cobra Video, also in 2001.[5] Later that year, Kocis filed for bankruptcy in federal court.[2][3] Kocis created two legal entities with the name "Cobra Video LLC": one in Pennsylvania in 2002,[6] the other in Delaware in 2005.[7]

Cobra competed in the market niche of low-budget, Barely Legal-style bareback films. The company was dedicated to "Capturing the Erotic Essence of Youth" by producing pornographic movies of young men who looked as if they could be adolescents having sex without condoms.[4]

In the five years after, between his bankruptcy and his death, Kocis' Cobra Video did very well financially. At the time of his death, Kocis had amassed personal possessions which included a Maserati convertible, a BMW sport utility vehicle and an Aston Martin car.[2][4] In addition to his Dallas Township home, Kocis owned two adjacent Rice Township parcels of land, valued at over $400,000, with no mortgages.[2][3]

Controversies[edit]

Allegations of sexual abuse of a child[edit]

In 2002, police found a videotape of Bryan Kocis, then 39, and a 15-year-old male in his home.[4] Kocis pleaded guilty to one count of sexual abuse of a child. He was charged with child pornography, and transportation of a minor for sexual purposes. Since the boy had lied about his age Kocis was given a probation sentence.[2]

In 2006 a judge, Michael Conahan, signed paperwork changing Kocis' charge from sex assault to corruption of minors. Kocis' former attorney, Al Flora, said the change was made because the original charge of sexual assault of a child was a mistake and that, "We didn't realize there was an error until 2006." As a result of that change, Kocis was not required to be registered as a Megan's Law offender.[8] Conahan later pleaded guilty to federal racketeering charges in relation to the infamous "Kids for Cash" scandal,[9] and is serving 17.5 years in prison.

Brent Corrigan[edit]

Beginning in early 2004, Kocis cast Sean Lockhart, in Cobra's Every Poolboy's Dream under the stage name "Brent Corrigan".[10] He starred in several more films in that year, notably Schoolboy Crush in 2004, in Bareboned Twinks and Casting Couch 4 in 2005, and other releases in 2006. On September 13, 2005, Corrigan's attorney announced that Corrigan was underaged when he filmed scenes for Cobra Video,[11] and had used a fake ID to participate in those scenes.[4][12] Cobra denied that it was ever aware of such allegations and publicly stated that it had copies of Corrigan's identity documents claiming a birth year of 1985.[12] A civil lawsuit between the two parties began soon after.

Kocis denied the allegations and began a counter-suit for copyright infringement, for the unauthorized use of Cobra’s “Brent Corrigan” name.[12] A final hearing in the matter was scheduled for February 21, 2007.[13]

In 2005 and 2006, Cobra removed six of the titles which featured Lockhart from store shelves, although they cited no reason for the removal.[14][15]

Death[edit]

Kocis was found dead on January 24, 2007 at the age of 44, after a fire at his Dallas Township, Pennsylvania home. According to the investigating coroner, Kocis was stabbed 28 times and his throat was cut, nearly decapitating him. His body was left in the house before it was set on fire. Officials had to use dental records to identify Kocis because his body was burned beyond recognition.[16][17][18][19]

On May 15, 2007, two Virginia Beach escorts, Harlow Cuadra and Joseph Kerekes, were arrested and charged with Kocis' murder.[20] Police arrested the pair after discovering evidence on Kocis' computer, which had survived the fire.[21][22]

On December 8, 2008, Kerekes pleaded guilty to second-degree murder, theft, tampering with or fabricating evidence, and criminal conspiracy, and was sentenced to life in prison without parole.[23][24] Cuadra pleaded not guilty and went to trial on February 24, 2009. On March 16, he was sentenced to life in prison without parole.[25] On April 7, 2009, Cuadra appealed his life sentence.[26]

Popular culture[edit]

Bryan Kocis' lawsuit against Sean Lockhart and the claim by Luzerne County (Pennsylvania) prosecutors during Harlow Cuadra's murder trial that Lockhart was "contractually bound" to perform sex acts for money for Bryan Kocis' Cobra Video company led to on-going public discussion about the legality of adult industry contracts and revealed why the adult entertainment industry in North America is concentrated in the State of California.[27][28]

Cobra Killer: Gay Porn Murder, was written by authors Andrew E. Stoner and Peter A. Conway, was about Bryan Kocis' murder, and the trials of Harlow Cuadra and Joseph Kerekes. Cobra Killer was published by Magnus Books on June 19, 2012.[29][30]

Based on the book, the film King Cobra premiered at the 2016 Tribeca Film Festival, with Christian Slater playing Bryan Kocis.[31]

Partial videography[edit]

  • Every Poolboy's Dream, 2004 (Cobra Video)
  • Schoolboy Crush, 2004 (Cobra Video)
  • Bareboned Twinks, 2005 (Cobra Video)
  • Casting Couch 4, 2005 (Cobra Video)

The previous four titles were voluntarily removed from circulation due to Corrigan's underage dispute. They have remained for sale on internet auction sites.

  • Cream BBoys, 2006 (Cobra Video)
  • Naughty Boy's Toys, 2006 (Cobra Video)
  • Brent Corrigan: Fuck Me Raw, 2006 (Cobra Video)
  • Take It Like a Bitch Boy, 2006 (Cobra Video)

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Kocis' parents still without closure". Archived from the original on 2009-03-21. 
  2. ^ a b c d e Malcolm, Wade. "Murder victim led guarded life". CitizensVoice.com. Archived from the original on 2007-09-28. Retrieved 2007-01-28. 
  3. ^ a b c d Lewis, Edward (2007-02-04). "Probe into Kocis death continues". TimesLeader.com. Archived from the original on 2007-02-08. Retrieved 2007-02-05. 
  4. ^ a b c d e "The Case of the Cobra Killer". Out.com. February 26, 2009. 
  5. ^ "Cobra Video required 2257 compliance". Cobravideo.com. Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  6. ^ [1][dead link]
  7. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on January 6, 2010. Retrieved February 22, 2010. 
  8. ^ Buynovsky, Sarah. "Questions Arise about Kocis' Legal Past". WNEP.com. Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2007-01-30. 
  9. ^ "Former Luzerne Judge Conahan Sentenced to 17.5 Years". The Times Tribune. 
  10. ^ Malcolm, Wade. "Phone, computer records sought". CitizensVoice.com. Archived from the original on 2007-09-28. Retrieved 2007-01-30. 
  11. ^ "Possibly Underage Gay Performer Worked for Cobra". Archived from the original on March 11, 2007. 
  12. ^ a b c "Cobra Strikes Back". Archived from the original on April 26, 2006. 
  13. ^ Liebacki, Ron. "Kocis Firm Suing Actor for $1M". TimesLeader.com. Archived from the original on 2007-02-02. Retrieved 2007-01-28. 
  14. ^ "AVN :: Articles - Possibly Underage Gay Performer Worked for Cobra". Web.archive.org. Archived from the original on March 11, 2007. Retrieved 2016-03-30. 
  15. ^ "GAYVN Article". Web.archive.org. 2006-05-08. Archived from the original on 2006-05-08. Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  16. ^ Lewis, Edward (2007-01-25). "Man found in burned home was murdered". TimesLeader.com. Archived from the original on 2007-02-03. Retrieved 2007-01-25. 
  17. ^ "Update: Coroner says victim dead at time of fire". 2007-01-25. Archived from the original on 2007-02-07. Retrieved 2007-01-25. 
  18. ^ "Gay porn producer slain". TimesLeader.com. 2007-01-26. Archived from the original on 2007-02-03. Retrieved 2007-01-26. 
  19. ^ Yum, Rosa. "Court Papers: Kocis Stabbed Dozens of Times". WNEP.com. Archived from the original on 2007-03-10. Retrieved 2007-01-29. 
  20. ^ Malcolm, Wade. "2 Men Charged with Murder". Times-Leader.com. Retrieved 2007-05-15. 
  21. ^ "Gay porn actors charged with killing executive in scheme to work with star". Archived from the original on 2009-04-06. Retrieved 2007-09-29.  ; Simon, Mallory, CourtTV.com; 2007-07-17. Retrieved 2007-08-16.
  22. ^ "Virginia Seizes Assets Of Pair Accused Of Killing Gay Porn Producer". Archived from the original on 2007-09-26. Retrieved 2007-09-26.  ; 365gay.com;2007-08-15. Retrieved 2007-08-16.
  23. ^ Guilty plea in porn-producer murder case[permanent dead link]; published 2008-12-08. Retrieved 2008-12-10.[dead link]
  24. ^ [2] Archived February 16, 2012, at the Wayback Machine.
  25. ^ "The Advocate: Cuadra to Serve Life in Prison". Web.archive.org. 2009-03-18. Archived from the original on March 18, 2009. Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  26. ^ "Citizens' Voice: Breaking News: Cuadra appeals verdict". Web.archive.org. 2009-04-10. Archived from the original on April 10, 2009. Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  27. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on January 8, 2015. Retrieved January 8, 2015. 
  28. ^ "Sexual (Re)consideration: Adult Entertainment Contracts and the Problem of Enforceability". Georgetown Law Journal. Retrieved 2016-03-30. 
  29. ^ "Gay Porn, Murder, And The Manhunt To Bring The Killers To Justice". Cobra Killer. Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  30. ^ "New book recounts an area homicide". The Times Leader. 2007-01-24. Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  31. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-06-04. Retrieved 2016-05-06. 

External links[edit]

Violence against LGBT people