In January of 2014, NASA’s Mars rover Opportunity took a picture of a location that it had recently photographed (12 Martian days earlier), but now there was a new object in the image.
Nicknamed “The Jelly Donut” NASA assumed that the rover had caused a nearby rock to move, but because of the odd appearance of the rock, decided to conduct a short investigation of the object.
However, neurologist and author Rhawn Joseph didn’t believe that NASA was doing enough to investigate, and demanded that NASA perform a much more thorough examination of what he called “a biological specimen on Mars.”
When the organization didn’t respond, Joseph filed a lawsuit to compel NASA “to perform a public, scientific, and statutory duty which is to closely photograph and thoroughly scientifically examine and investigate a putative biological organism.”
Additionally, because NASA referred to the object as a rock, not a biological lifeform, Joseph also made sure to claim that the discovery of life on Mars was done “by Petitioner” (a.k.a. Joseph himself).