Remember Assistant Attorney General Andrew Shirvell? He's the guy who was writing extrememly negative posts about a gay student at the University of Michigan. There were also incidents where Shirvell turned up on campus. His target, Christopher Armstrong, a student body president at the campus sued. Today, Christpher won. Since Shirvell was unwilling to apologize and retract what he said, the jury awarded Christopher 4.5 million in damages.
According to the AP, via ABC News:
A jury on Thursday awarded a gay University of Michigan student body president $4.5 million in his lawsuit against a former Michigan assistant attorney general who posted about him in an anti-gay blog.Shirvell, of course, feels the jury was striking out against his first amendment rights (although honestly, I don't remember the first amendment protecting people who are effectively stalking others).
The U.S. District Court jury ruled in favor of Christopher Armstrong, who claimed he suffered distress after a blog created by Andrew Shirvell accused him of enticing minors with alcohol and recruiting people to become homosexual.
Shirvell, who was representing himself, said the jury award was "grossly excessive" for what was "clearly protected speech ... and activity." "This should have been thrown out," he said, adding that he plans to appeal. "Juries give short shrift to First Amendment rights."Now if you'll remember, Shirvell was fired from his position of Assistant Attorney General because of this behavior and is apparently still unemployed. Although I'm not one to believe in karma, I must say this is pretty fitting.
For more details see: ABC News Site