Court gives green light to harassment lawsuit against lawmaker

HARPER WOODS (AP) — The Michigan appeals court says a Detroit-area lawmaker doesn’t have immunity from a lawsuit by a former aide who says he was fired because he rejected sexual advances.

Rep. Brian Banks, a Democrat from Harper Woods, claimed he has immunity to lawsuits tied to legislative business. But the court says the allegations aren’t related to the legislative process.

Banks’ former aide alleges that he was hired as a driver in 2013 but then dismissed a few months later after he rejected a romantic relationship and his duties changed. In response, Banks says the aide was fired when the lawmaker learned about a driving violation and an arrest warrant.

The 3-0 decision affirmed the rulings of Wayne County Judge Susan Borman. The case returns to her court.