Justice
4:11 pm
Wed April 6, 2011

University of Michigan student sues former assistant attorney general

Andrew Shirvell gained national attention for his public campaign against a University of Michigan student.

Now, that U-M student is suing him.

The Detroit News reports:

A University of Michigan student is suing a fired assistant attorney general for allegedly stalking him and defaming his character last year in a scandal that received nationwide publicity.

The lawsuit was filed Friday in Washtenaw Circuit Court by Christopher Armstrong, 21, the president of the U-M Student Assembly, against Andrew Shirvell, who was fired by former Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox last November for using state computers to wage a campaign against the openly gay student.

"This brings civil action against him for his months-long personal campaign of lies and distortion," said Deborah Gordon, Armstrong's attorney.

The suit seeks more than $25,000 in damages.

Armstrong, who graduates from U-M in May, did not want to leave his record tainted with malicious Internet postings that stands to be corrected, Gordon said.

The suit claims Shirvell "developed a bizarre personal obsession" with Armstrong in early 2010 after claiming the student was a radical homosexual activist. Shirvell created a Facebook group under the name of "U of M Alumni and Others Against Chris Armstrong and his Radical MSA (Michigan Student Assembly) Agenda." The page was late deactivated by Facebook, but a blog, titled "Chris Armstrong Watch" was created and began spreading false and defamatory information, the suit said.

Threats by Shirvell included statements such as "you're going down fruity-pebbles" and "I remember the good old days when 'guys' like this would get their asses kicked at school," the suit says

He also repeatedly referred to Armstrong as the Harvey Milk of Michigan. Milk was the first openly gay man to be elected to office in California, and he was assassinated.

Other allegations by Shirvell alleged Armstrong engaging in sexual acts in a church and on a playground and ascribed to the teachings of the Ku Klux Klan among other bogus claims.

Here's a video of Shirvell talking to Anderson Cooper from last September:

 

-Brian Short, Michigan Radio Newsroom