William Stowell is the young man who brought a suit in federal court against Frank P. Cariello, the obstetrician who circumcised him as an infant and against Good Samaritan Hospital of West Islip, New York. Stowell's suit was settled out of court in 2003 and does not constitute a legal precedent. The cash settlement is confidential, so it has not been revealed.
He was represented by David J. Llewellyn of Atlanta, Georgia.
Stowell argued that the consent given by his mother was invalid because she was heavily drugged at the time. She would not otherwise have granted consent for circumcision.
Due to statutes of limitation, such suits must be filed shortly after one reaches the age of majority.
- (20 December 2000). [}http://www.circumstitions.com/Law.html
Man Sues for Being Circumcised as an Infant], http://www.circumstitions.com, Attorneys for the Rights of the Child. Retrieved 7 June 2020.
This case highlights the travesty of infant circumcision, which seriously breaches the child’s right to bodily integrity and is incompatible with the doctor’s legal and ethical duties toward the child patient. Circumcising a child without medical necessity is criminal assault. All physicians and hospitals that currently circumcise males without medical justification would be wise to reconsider this practice.
- (12 March 2001)."Man Sues For Loss of Foreskin", abcnews.go.com, ABC News. Retrieved 6 January 2020. "Stowell's case was filed in December; the hospital responded with a motion to dismiss. In it's motion, the hospital claims there is a 10-year statute of limitations on medical malpractice suits. However, Llewellyn responds that in the state of New York, the clock doesn't start ticking until a person turns 18."
- Chester-Taxin, Sharon (1 November 2001)."The Penis Page", www.cirp.org, Penthouse. Retrieved 7 June 2020.
- Svoboda, J. Steven (29 April 2003).
Doctor and Hospital Settle Circumcision Lawsuit, www.arclaw.org, Attorneys for the Rights of the Child. Retrieved 29 April 2020.
David J. Llewellyn, one of Plaintiff Stowell’s attorneys, said, “William and I are very happy that we were able to resolve this case with both the hospital and the doctor. While a settlement is never an admission of liability, I believe it shows that our allegations were taken seriously. Never again can someone say that a young man who is dissatisfied with his circumcision as an infant is being frivolous when he objects to his mutilation and brings suit to obtain justice. This case should send a message to doctors that they run the risk of a lawsuit each time they circumcise an infant for non-therapeutic reasons, particularly when they rely on the hospital to obtain consent the day after birth. Social or cosmetic concerns provide no justification for harmful surgery. I would expect that this is just the first of many cases that will be brought by angry circumcised young men against their circumcisers.”