Michael was arrested by an undercover police officer while they had been operating a ‘sting operation’ to crack down on homosexual acts in public washrooms. Michael claims it was a set up, that the officer followed him into the washroom and played “I’ll show you mine, if you show me yours,” and that when it was his turn, he ended up in handcuffs. Michael claims that he was engaging in public sexual acts as a “subconscious deliberate act” to come out about his sexuality to the pubic, feeling like a fraud for hiding it for so long. He was fined $810 and served 80 hours of community service.
In 1999, the police officer who arrested Michael filed a $10 million dollar lawsuit against the singer, accusing him of mocking the officer in a music video for the song ‘Outside’, which depicted policemen in uniform engaging in light homosexual acts. . . in a public washroom. The case was dismissed as the officer could not legally recover damages for emotional distress.