Gay UM junior granted protection order against roommate

Oralandar Brand-Williams
The Detroit News

The lawyer for a University of Michigan student who said he was harassed by his roommates and living in fear after coming out as gay on National Coming Out Day learned Thursday that he was granted a protection order that requires the roommate to leave.

Matthew Mansour, 21, said he declared his sexual orientation Oct. 11 on Instagram. The next day, his roommates confronted him, he said.

“While I received an outpouring of support from friends, I had a pretty horrifying experience with my roommates,” said Mansour, a junior studying business. “They starting using gay slurs and saying ‘All gays go to hell.’”

Mansour said he was afraid for his safety after the barrage of alleged insults and is sleeping on friends’ couches out of fear of returning to his dorm.

Mansour said he left for fall break in Denver and while he was away, a friend went to his dorm room to borrow some spices belonging to Mansour and discovered that many of his belongings had been thrown from the sixth floor of the student apartment he has shared with three others.

He said his food, a pricey coffee maker and other items were tossed. A wall had been damaged and other items were destroyed, with the loss amounting to about $680, Mansour said.

“I have been terrified to enter my apartment and have been sleeping on a friends (sic) couch while waiting for the university or leasing company to take action,” said Mansour, who is from Bloomfield Hills.

Mansour said his roommates have been aggressive and were verbally abusive toward him because of his therapy dog, a mini-Goldendoodle.

A University of Michigan spokesman declined to comment, saying “Since this was an off-campus incident, we do not have any information to share.”

Mansour filed a request for a personal protection order against one of his roommates in Washtenaw County Circuit Court; Mansour’s attorney Arnold Reed said a judge granted the PPO on Thursday. The roommate, Reed said, must leave the apartment immediately.

Mansour said University of Michigan housing officials offered him alternate housing in two dorm rooms, one on North Campus, but he says he wants to stay where he is.

Reed called Wednesday for UM and Ann Arbor police “to act with all due deliberate speed to bring the cowards who perpetrated these senseless acts of violence and terror to justice. Because of these criminals, my client is homeless and has nowhere to turn.”

Reed said Landmark apartments “is not acting fast enough to evict the perpetrators and the University of Michigan needs to act more swiftly both in their investigation and support of Matthew. There should be zero tolerance by the University of Michigan for this dangerous and violent behavior.”

An assistant manager who answered the phone Wednesday afternoon at the off-campus complex declined to comment.

(313) 222-2027