Housing And Civil Enforcement Cases Documents

IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA


UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
     Plaintiff,

v.

BYRON CLAIBORNE
     Defendant.

____________________________________


COMPLAINT

The United States of America alleges:

  1. This action is brought by the United States to enforce the provisions of Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968 (the Fair Housing Act), as amended by the Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988, 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601, et seq.
  2. This court has jurisdiction over this action under 28 U.S.C. § 1331, 28 U.S.C.§ 1345 and 42 U.S.C. § 3614(a).
  3. Defendant Byron Claiborne is a resident of Auburn, California, in the Eastern District of California. At all times relevant to this action, Defendant Claiborne has been the owner and manager of two apartment buildings located at 3317 W Street and 3318 V Street ("the subject properties"), in the City of Sacramento, California.
  4. The subject properties owned and managed by Defendant Claiborne are dwellings within the meaning of 42 U.S.C. § 3602(b).
  5. Defendant Claiborne has violated the Fair Housing Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601, et seq., by discriminating against persons on the basis of sex in connection with the rental of apartments in the subject properties.
  6. From at least 1997 through the present, Defendant Claiborne has subjected female tenants of the subject properties to discrimination on the basis of sex, including severe, pervasive, and unwelcome sexual harassment. Such conduct has included, but is not limited to, unwanted verbal sexual advances; unwanted sexual touching; conditioning the terms and conditions of women's tenancy on the granting of sexual favors; entering the apartment of women tenants without permission or notice; threatening and taking steps to evict or take other adverse action against female tenants and prospective tenants when they refused or objected to his sexual advances; and refusing to permit women tenants to have overnight guests or imposing extra rental fees and restrictions on such guests while not placing such restrictions on overnight guests of male tenants.
  7. The conduct of Defendant Claiborne described above constitutes:
    1. A denial of housing or making housing unavailable because of sex, in violation of Section 804(a) of the Fair Housing Act, 42 U.S.C. § 3604(a);
    2. Discrimination in the terms, conditions, or privileges of the rental of dwellings, or in the provision of services or facilities in connection therewith, because of sex, in violation of Section 804(b) of the Fair Housing Act, 42 U.S.C. § 3604(b);
    3. The making of statements with respect to the rental of dwellings that indicate a preference, limitation, or discrimination based on sex, in violation of Section 804(c) of the Fair Housing Act, 42 U.S.C. § 3604(c); and
    4. Coercion, intimidation, threats, or interference with persons in the exercise or enjoyment of, or on account of their having exercised or enjoyed, their rights under Section 804 of the Fair Housing Act, in violation of Section 818 of the Fair Housing Act, 42 U.S.C. § 3617.
  8. The conduct of Defendant Claiborne described above constitutes:
    1. A pattern or practice of resistance to the full enjoyment of rights granted by the Fair Housing Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601 et seq.; and
    2. A denial to a group of persons of rights granted by the Fair Housing Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601 et seq., which denial raises an issue of general public importance.
  9. Female tenants and persons associated with them have been injured by Defendant's discriminatory conduct. Such persons are aggrieved persons as defined in 42 U.S.C. § 3602(i), and have suffered damages as a result of Defendant Claiborne's conduct.
  10. Defendant Claiborne's conduct was intentional, willful, and taken in disregard for the rights of others.

WHEREFORE, the United States prays that the Court enter an ORDER that:

  1. Declares that Defendant Claiborne's discriminatory practices violate the Fair Housing Act, as amended, 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601 et seq.;
  2. Enjoins Defendant Claiborne, his agents, employees, and successors, and all other persons in active concert or participation with them from:
    1. Discriminating on account of sex against any person in any aspect of the rental of a dwelling;
    2. Interfering with or threatening to take any action against any person in the exercise or enjoyment of rights granted or protected by the Fair Housing Act, as amended; and
    3. Failing or refusing to take such affirmative steps as may be necessary to restore, as nearly as practicable, the victims of Defendant Claiborne's past unlawful practices to the position they would have been in but for the discriminatory conduct;
  3. Awards such damages as would fully compensate each identifiable victim of Defendant Claiborne's discriminatory housing practices for injuries caused by the Defendant Claiborne's discriminatory conduct, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 3614(d)(1)(B);
  4. Awards punitive damages to each identifiable victim of Defendant Claiborne's discriminatory housing practices, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 3614(d)(1)(B); and
  5. Assesses a civil penalty against Defendant Claiborne in order to vindicate the public interest, pursuant to 42 U.S.C.
§ 3614(d)(1)(C).

The United States further prays for such additional relief as the interests of justice may require.


JOHN ASHCROFT
Attorney General

RALPH F. BOYD, Jr.
Assistant Attorney General

United States Attorney
JOAN A. MAGAGNA
Chief, Housing and Civil Enforcement Section

MICHAEL HIRST
Assistant United States Attoney
United States Attorney's Office
501 I Street, Suite 10-100
Sacramento, CA 95814
Tel.: (916) 554-2700
Fax: (916) 554-2900
California Bar # _______

TIMOTHY J. MORAN
RHONDA L. CAMPBELL
Attorneys
U.S. Department of Justice
Civil Rights Division
Housing & Civil Enforcement Section
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20530
Tel.: (202) 305-2951
Fax (202) 514-1689

Document Filed: May 21, 2002 > >

Updated August 6, 2015

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