On December 13, 2010, five days after Derrick Burts “outed” himself as porn’s “Patient Zeta,” adult industry trade publication Adult Video News ran an open letter from porn agent Mark Spiegler, in which he offered Burts $1,000 to submit to a polygraph test. Burts would receive the money simply for submitting to the test, regardless of the outcome.
“It is my opinion, and my opinion only, that Derrick Burts aka Derek Chambers aka Cameron Reid DID NOT contract the HIV virus while shooting a scene for a pornographic movie (gay or straight),” Spiegler wrote.
Burts initially agreed to the offer, but the emails exchanged between Burts, Spiegler and the potential polygraph examiner reveal that Burts backed out after Spiegler refused to allow Burts to choose or substantially re-write the questions!
Regarding his alleged “escorting” activities – which came to light when his ad on the gay hook-up site Rentboy.com surfaced — Burts wanted to narrow the questioning to: “Did you ever meet or have sex with anyone from escorting on RentBoy?”
Burts explained that because he had never acted on his RentBoy ad, there was “NO WAY possible for me to have contracted HIV from escorting….”
He also sought to alter a question about whether he had contracted HIV on set to “Did Jennifer Miller from AIM tell you that you had sex with a known positive gay performer while in Florida shooting?” In addition, Burts sought to narrow the question concerning whether or now he’d ever had bareback gay sex to whether or not he’d ever had bareback sex during a gay shoot.
“I would never risk having bareback sex as I am aware of the high risks involved of getting HIV from that method,” Burts wrote. “My agency is 100% against bareback porn and I never participated in a bareback shoot.”
Asking things like “If I ever did this or that” could refer to any point and time in my life before contracting HIV. I would like to stick to the time frame in which I may have contracted HIV which is between August and September as the widest gap. Based off the Western Blot test I contracted HIV around mid September. My last negative test was September 3rd… I tested positive on October 8th. There is a 60 day time frame for HIV to show in the body. So that would be all of August and September.
Yes, I did have sex with partners while swinging without a condom. Is it possible that I got if from swinging? No. It was outside of the time period and every girl I did swinging with was cleared on the quarantine list. Have I EVER had anal sex with a guy before? Yes… long time ago before starting porn…. If I am going to do this test then the 4 questions have to be specific and not broad.
On the next go-round, Burts suggested another configuration of the questions, including, “Did you have bareback anal sex with guys in any of your shoots in the time frame you may have contracted HIV?” [emphasis added]
Spiegler was flummoxed, and wrote the polygraph expert,
Please remind Derrick that the questions will be questions that I choose – not him. I am paying for the test and I want to have MY questions answered. Derrick cannot craft the questions to HIS liking.
After reading Spiegler’s ultimatum, Burts wrote a lengthy response — and also mentioned in passing both his “AHF Legal Council” [sic] and his Florida attorney, Norm Kent. Having previously stated, in his initial email, “I NEVER met with anyone from escorting PERIOD!” Burts now contradicted himself with some startling new admissions:
I had a posting for escorting during the time I got HIV, however, I did not meet with anyone from the ad. The reason I am time specific on the escort question is because back in May or June I met with a guy from Craigslist and gave a massage and a handjob on a guy… I classify that as escorting, however, there is no way I got HIV from that time since there was no sex and out of the time frame of being able to get HIV.
As for the anal sex question, there was a time I had unprotected sex with another guy while participating in a threesome at some point in June. I know I didn’t get HIV from that time as well because it was out of the range of time I could have got it and all people in that threesome have been tested since, it was also before I started porn….
Spiegler, interviewed the next day on AdultFYI, mocked Burts’ logic: “He goes, ‘I didn’t get it from [swinging] because they all tested negative.’ Like who gets everyone’s name and number at a swinger party?”
Many in the industry continue to speculate that Burts sought to alter the questions because he may have contracted HIV from someone involved with his Florida gay porn shoots with whom he had sex off –camera – perhaps even on set.