The Hollywood Police Department in Florida doesn’t just want Rope Rituals star (and HGTV Design Star contestant) Michael Verdugo to remain permanently off the squad. They want to take his Florida Department of Law Enforcement certification, which would prohibit him from ever being a cop again.
Told by the department he was fired not for being gay but for failing to disclose in his job application that he made the gay light bondage film, (a decision backed up by an arbitrator), Verdugo has been fighting the ruling and will appear in Broward Circuit Court in November to argue his case. (The Hollywood Police Department agreed to drop its certification claim if Verdugo drops his lawsuit against the department. He refused.)
“I want my case to be an example of what happens in Florida,” says Verdugo, who was known to Rope Rituals watchers as Mikey V. “I still want to be a cop. My goal — not a practical one — is to go back to Hollywood.”
In the meantime he says he’s still lobbying for the passage of ENDA — although a law that bars discrimination against sexuality wouldn’t technically apply here, since the police department, uh, only had a problem with Verdugo not telling his future employer about the flick.