Michigan prosecutors say Nikki Joly, a longtime LGBT activist, set fire to her home and killed her pets due to resentment from subsiding controversy over the enactment of nondiscrimination legislation he advocated for.
The Detroit News reported Monday that law enforcement charge Joly, a transgender man from Jackson, Michigan, burned down her own home, killing five pets inside, in what was initially investigated by the FBI as an alleged hate crime in 2017. The newspaper, citing two individuals who worked along Joly at St. Johns United Church of Christ, where the Jackson Pride Center is based from, reported that Jolly, 54, had become “frustrated the controversy over gay rights had died down with the passage of the nondiscrimination law.”
The Detroit News reported:
The church officials, Barbara Shelton and Bobby James, when asked by police about a possible motive for the fire, said Joly was disappointed the Jackson Pride Parade and Festival, held five days before the blaze, hadn’t received more attention or protests.
Contacted by a reporter, James declined to comment. But Shelton quibbled with the way police characterized her remarks, saying she had no idea if Joly was frustrated by the lack of controversy.
“Not sure I said that,” she wrote in an email. “I have no idea about anything, never heard Nikki comment in any fashion about anything like that.”
Police officer Aaron Grove, who interviewed Shelton and James, said the pair described Joly as “‘very deceptive” and possessing “layers of manipulation.”
Joly, who was named MLive’s 2018 Citizen of the Year, spearheaded several LGBTQ-friendly initiatives and events, including the town’s first gay festival.