UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ILLINOIS
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
FOXCROFT MANAGEMENT AND
CONSTRUCTION, INC.; and
D'ABAR BUILDERS, INC.,
The United States of America alleges:
- This action is brought to enforce the Fair Housing Act, Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968, as amended by the Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988 (the "Fair Housing Act"), 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601-3619.
Jurisdiction and Venue
- This Court has jurisdiction over this action under 28 U.S.C. § 1345 and 28 U.S.C. § 3614(a).
- Venue is proper in that the claims alleged herein arose in the Northern District of Illinois.
- Foxcroft Apartments (the "Complex") is an apartment complex located on Foxcroft Road, Naperville, in the Northern District of Illinois. The Complex consists of nine (9) buildings containing a total of 180 dwelling units, as well as a rental office and clubhouse. Forty-four of the apartments are located on the ground floor.
- The apartments at the Complex and the adjoining clubhouse were designed and constructed for first occupancy after March 13, 1991. Each of the apartments is a dwelling within the meaning of 42 U.S.C. § 3602(b).
- Each of the 44 ground-floor apartments at the Complex is a "covered multifamily dwelling" within the meaning of 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(7)(A) and is subject to the design and construction requirements at 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(3)(C).
- The clubhouse is for the use of the residents of the Complex. It falls within the public and common use space covered by the design and construction requirements at 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(3)(C).
- Defendant Foxcroft Partnership developed and owns Foxcroft Apartments and is responsible for its design and construction. Foxcroft Partnership has its principal place of business in the Northern District of Illinois.
- Defendant Wilfred Barry, a managing partner of Foxcroft Partnership, developed and owns Foxcroft Apartments and is responsible for its design and construction. Mr. Barry resides in the Northern District of Illinois.
- Defendant Foxcroft Management and Construction, Inc. built a number of the buildings in the Complex and is responsible for their design and construction. Foxcroft Management and Construction, Inc. has its principal place of business in the Northern District of Illinois.
- Defendant D'Abar Builders, Inc. built a number of the buildings in the Complex and is responsible for their design and construction. D'Abar Builders, Inc. has its principal place of business in the Northern District of Illinois.
Fair Housing Act Pattern or Practice Claim
- The defendants have failed to design and construct Foxcroft Apartments so that: (a) the public use and common use portions are readily accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities; (b) all doors into and within the 44 ground floor units are sufficiently wide to allow passage by persons who use wheelchairs; (c) all premises within the 44 ground floor units contain: (i) an accessible route into and through the dwelling; (ii) electrical outlets, thermostats and other environmental controls in accessible locations; and (iii) usable kitchens and bathrooms such that an individual in a wheelchair can maneuver about the space.
- The defendants, through the actions referred to in the preceding paragraph, have:
- Discriminated in the rental, or otherwise made unavailable or denied, dwellings to renters because of handicap, in violation of 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(1); and
- Discriminated against persons in the terms, conditions or privileges of rental of a dwelling, or in the provision of services or facilities in connection with a dwelling, because of handicap, in violation of 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(2); and
- Failed to design and construct dwellings in compliance with the accessibility features mandated by 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(3)(C).
- The conduct of the defendants described above constitutes:
- A pattern or practice of resistance to the full enjoyment of rights granted by the Fair Housing Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601-3619; and
- A denial to a group of persons of rights granted by the Fair Housing Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601-3619, which denial raises an issue of general public importance.
- Persons who may have been the victims of the defendants' discriminatory housing practices are aggrieved persons as defined by 42 U.S.C. § 3602(i) and may have suffered injuries as a result of the defendants' conduct described above.
- The defendants' conduct described above was intentional, willful, and taken in disregard for the rights of others.
WHEREFORE, the United States prays that the court enter an order that:
- Declares that the defendants' policies and practices, as alleged herein, violate the Fair Housing Act;
- Enjoins the defendants, their officers, employees, agents, successors and all other persons in active concert or participation with any of them, from:
- Failing or refusing, to the extent possible, to bring the 44 ground floor units and public use and common use areas of the Complex into compliance with 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(3)(C);
- Failing or refusing to take such affirmative steps as may be necessary to restore, as nearly as practicable, the victims of the defendants' unlawful practices to the position they would have been in but for the discriminatory conduct; and
- Designing or constructing covered multifamily dwelling in the future that do not contain the accessibility and adaptability features required by 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(3)(C);
- Awards such damages as would fully compensate each person aggrieved by the defendants' discriminatory housing practices for his or her injuries resulting from the defendants' discriminatory conduct, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 3614(d)(1)(B);
- Awards punitive damages to each person aggrieved by the defendants' discriminatory housing practices because of the intentional and willful nature of the defendants' conduct, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 3614(d)(1)(B); and
- Assesses a civil penalty against each defendant an amount authorized by 42 U.S.C. § 3614(d)(1)(C), in order to vindicate the public interest.
The United States further prays for such additional relief as the interests of justice may require.
|SCOTT R. LASSAR
United States Attorney
|BILL LANN LEE
Assistant Attorney General
|JOAN A. MAGAGNA
Chief, Housing and Civil Enforcement Section
|JOAN C. LASER
Assistant United States Attorney
219 S. Dearborn Street
Chicago, Illinois 60604
|TIMOTHY J. MORAN
ELIZABETH O. TUCCI
Housing & Civil Enforcement Section
Civil Rights Division
Department of Justice
P.O. Box 65998
Washington, D.C. 20035-5998
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