The Assistant Attorney General in Michigan has lost his job due to actions towards an openly gay University of Michigan student that crossed a line according to state Attorney General Mike Cox.
Cox said that Andrew Shirvell’s behavior repeatedly violated the policies of the office and was borderline stalking. He also accused Shirvell of using state resources inappropriately.
Chris Armstrong is the University of Michigan student body president and the target of Andre Shirvell’s attacks both in person and online. Armstrong’s attorney, Deborah Gordon, stated that the actions of Shirvell were ‘inexplicable’ and that they were gratified that justice was being done in the firing of Shirvell.
Shirvell’s lawyer, Philip Thomas, stated that his client was devastated by the announcement and the actions of the Attorney General ‘smelled political’.
Attorney General Mike Cox had previously defended Shirvell in September over his blog, Chris Armstrong Watch, that targeted the student and rallied against him. Cox had stated that though Shirvell appeared to be a bully, he was protected by his first amendment rights.
Monday, Cox said that Shirvell was not dismissed for the blog but instead for actions that were unbecoming of a state employee that stretched far beyond the blog. He noted that Shirvell had shown up at Armstrong’s house three separate times including a 1:30 am visit. According to Cox this was a harassing and stalking behavior that showed intent.
Cox also noted other things that Shirvell did that would be classified as harassing and stalking such as attempting to get Armstrong fired from his position in Nancy Pelosi’s office. He also attempted to out Armstrong’s friends as gay though many were not and spent time harassing those friends. Many of these actions Shirvell had completed during his working hours while using state resources.
Cox also noted that Shirvell lied to investigators during his disciplinary hearing.
Shirvell took a leave of absence in October and was subsequently banned from his alma mater campus, the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.
Shirvell defended his actions stating that his problems lie in the fact that Armstrong was pushing a radical homosexual agenda. Armstrong later commented on his big issues which included longer cafeteria hours, gender neutral housing and lower tuition.
Gordon says they are not finished fighting Shirvell. They intend to continue until they have gotten him disbarred from practicing law in Michigan.