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e Fair Housing Act on the basis of race, national origin and familial status. The complaint alleges that the Sterling Defendants refused to rent to non-Korean prospective tenants, misrepresented the availability of apartment units to non-Korean prospective tenants, and provided inferior treatment to non-Korean tenants in the Koreatown section of Los Angeles. The complaint also alleges that the Sterling Defendants refused to rent to African-American prospective tenants and misrepresented the availability of apartment units to African-American prospective tenants in the Beverly Hills section of Los Angeles. In addition, the complaint alleges that the Sterling Defendants refused to rent to families with children and misrepresented the availability of apartment units to families with children throughout the buildings that they own or manage in Los Angeles County. The Division also alleges that the Sterling Defendants made statements and published notices or advertisements in connection with the rental of apartment units that express a preference for Korean tenants in the Koreatown section of Los Angeles and express discrimination against African-Americans and families with children in Los Angeles County.

United States v. Stevens and Anstine d/b/a Knollwood Partners (E.D. Pa.)

On April 28, 2000, we filed our complaint  which alleged that the owners violated the Fair Housing Act by informing families with children that they could only rent units on the first floor of the apartment complex. Our allegations were based on evidence developed through our testing program.

On October 25, 2000, the United States settled this case with a consent decree which included the payment of $24,000 to a fair housing group and another $5,000 in civil penalties.

The apartment complex was sold during the course of this litigation and the new owners are not named in the lawsuit.

On December 4, 2006, the Court entered a consent order resolving United States v. Stevens (S.D. Ala.) The complaint, filed on May 18, 2005, alleged the defendant discriminated on the basis race by harassing and later evicting the complainant after learning the complainant, who is Caucasian had a bi-racial (African-American) child and had African American friends. The complaint further alleged the defendant told the complainant she did not want African-Americans in her mobile home and would not have rented to her had she know her daughter was bi-racial.

The consent order, resolves the government's case as well as the related claims of Ms. Jones and Angela Macon, a neighbor of Ms. Jones, both of whom intervened in the government's lawsuit. Under the consent order, the defendant has agreed to pay more than $40,000 in damages and penalties; to post a nondiscriminatory rental policy; to undergo training on the requirements of the Fair Housing Act; and to submit periodic reports to the Justice Department. The consent order will remain in effect for three years.

United States v. Strieter, et al. (C.D. Ill.)

On September 19, 2000, the United States filed a fair housing complaint against United States v. Strieter, et al. (C.D. Ill.) alleging that the defendants discriminatorily denied housing to Randy Upton and his wife, Tara Upton, based upon Randy Upton's use of a wheelchair and a discriminatory "no wheelchairs" policy.

On November 2, 2001, the parties reached a settlement in which the defendants agreed to adopt policies clarifying that no restrictions shall be placed on any person with disability from using wheelchairs within their apartment units, conduct outreach to organizations providing housing counseling to persons with disabilities, and pay $35,000 in damages to the complainants.

The lawsuit arose as a result of a complaint filed with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

On July 18, 2007, the Court entered a consent decree in United States v. Stuber (C.D. Ill.), a Fair Housing Act election case which was referred to the Division by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The complaint, filed on October 20, 2006, alleged that the owners and managers of a nine-unit apartment building in Morton, Illinois violated the Fair Housing Act on the basis of race by refusing to rent an apartment to an African-American woman and her twelve year old daughter. The consent decree requires the defendants to pay $40,000 and to submit to injunctive relief, including, recordkeeping and monitoring, and training. The decree also contains an admission from defendants that they violated the Fair Housing Act and a statement that they regret any harm caused by this violation. The United States Attorney's Office also filed a motion to appoint a guardian ad litem to represent the interests of the minor complainant. The consent decree will remain in effect for three years.

On June 1, 2007, the United States filed a complaint in United States v. Sturdevant, et al. (D. Kan.), alleging that the defendants retaliated against Melissa Kothe in violation of Section 818 of the Fair Housing Act. Specifically, the complaint alleges that defendants terminated her employment in response to Ms. Kothe's cooperating with the Department of Housing and Urban Development ("HUD") investigators and assisting others to file complaints with HUD.

The case was referred to the Division after the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) received a complaint, conducted an investigation, and issued a charge of discrimination.

United States v. Sunburst Mobile Home Village, Inc. et al. (D.N.M.)

On November 26, 2002, U.S. District Court Judge Martha Vázquez approved a consent order in United States v. Sunburst Mobile Home Village, Inc. et al. (D.N.M.). The complaint, filed on October 19, 2001, alleged that Mr. Geiger, the owner of Sunburst Mobile Home Village, and Mr. Rivera, the Mexican-American on-site manager, engaged in a pattern or practice of discrimination on the basis of national origin in violation of the Fair Housing Act. Specifically, the Division alleged that Defendants' rental practices revealed a pattern of discriminatory treatment of tenants and rental applicants of Cuban national origin. Under the terms of the consent order, the defendants' will pay $19,000 in monetary damages, and a $1,000 civil penalty. Additionally, the defendants must establish nondiscriminatory standards and procedures at the mobile home park, notify all employees and tenants of their nondiscriminatory policies, attend fair housing training, pay for three (3) years of fair housing testing, and file reports with the Division. The consent order will remain in effect for three (3) years.

The case was originally referred to the Division after the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) received a complaint, conducted an investigation, and issued a charge of discrimination.

United States v. Taigen & Sons, Inc., et al. (D. Idaho)

On July 18, 2006, the Court entered a Consent Order resolving United States v. Taigen & Sons, Inc., et al. (D. Idaho), a Fair Housing Act pattern or practice case alleging discrimination on the basis of disability. The complaint, filed on July 11, 2001, alleged that the defendants failed to design and construct Centennial Trail Apartments in Post Falls, Idaho, in accordance with the accessibility provisions of the Act and the Americans With Disabilities Act. On September 29, 2003, the Court had granted in part the United States' motion for summary judgment. The Court found that there was no genuine issue of dispute that defendants violated the Act and the ADA by failing to design and construct the complex in accordance with both laws. The complex fails in many respects to meet the accessibility requirements, e.g., the rental office was on the second floor and its bathroom and other features were inaccessible; interior doors are too narrow; the kitchens and some bathrooms lack sufficient maneuvering space; and common areas, including the mailboxes and sidewalks, are inaccessible. On January 25, 2006, the court issued an order that the retrofits must be made within one year and without regard to whether any resident requests the retrofits. Pursuant to the Consent Order, the defendants will complete the retrofitting and pay $58,000 to compensate aggrieved individuals, including residents who experienced difficulties living at the complex and persons who were unable to live there, due to its non-compliance. The consent decree will remain in effect for three and a half years.

United States v. Tamarack Property Management Co., et al. (D. Mont.)

On August 11, 2003, the United States filed a consent decree in United States & Martinez/Avalos v. Tamarack Property Management Co., et al. (D. Mont.). The complaint, filed on June 5, 2002, alleged that the defendants (Tamarack Property Management Co., Forsyth Development, Foundation, Inc., the city of Forsyth, and other individuals) violated the Fair Housing Act on the basis of disability when they refused to permit tenants at Riverview Villa, a fifty-unit retirement development in Forsyth, Montana, to install, at their expense, a wheelchair ramp, and a portable hot tub, which one of the tenants needed for medical reasons to relieve the significant pain he experienced from his disability. Under the terms of the Consent Decree, the defendants will pay $98,000 in monetary damages, establish non-discriminatory written policies for receiving requests for reasonable modifications and reasonable accommodations, notify employees and tenants of the non-discriminatory policies, receive fair housing training, and submit reports to the United States twice a year for the three year and three month term of the consent decree.

The case was referred to the Division after the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) received a complaint, conducted an investigated and issued a charge of discrimination.

United States v. Tanski, et al. (N.D.N.Y.)

On January 22, 2008, the Court entered a consent decree in United States v. Tanski, et al. (N.D.N.Y.) to settle its lawsuit against developers Bruce Tanski, the Bruce Tanski Construction and Development Company, Michael Dennis, and the Mountain Ledge Development Corporation. The complaint, filed on June 21, 2004, and amended for the second time on January 20, 2006, alleged that the various defendants failed to design and construct 362 ground-floor apartments and the public and common areas at the McGregor Village Apartments in Wilton, N.Y., and several other properties in accordance with the accessibility provisions of the Fair Housing Act. In addition to the claim brought on behalf of the HUD complainant, the United States' complaint added an allegation that the defendants' conduct constitutes a pattern and practice of discrimination and a denial of rights to a group of persons.

The consent decree will require the defendants to eliminate steps at ground-floor units and retrofit the apartments; to retrofit public and common use areas; and to pay $155,000 in damages to persons identified by the government as having been harmed by these inaccessible features, and $20,000 in civil penalties to the government. In addition, the settlement requires the defendants to comply with federal accessibility requirements in all future construction of apartment complexes; to report to the government on any future construction projects; and to undergo training on the requirements of the Fair Housing Act. The consent decree will remain in effect for four (4) years after the date of its entry or eighteen (18) months after the date that the last retrofit is completed.

On July 7, 2005, the Court entered a partial consent decree (PDF Version) resolving its claims against an engineering company, Keystone Associates L.L.C.. The firm was responsible for the site plan for one of the seven properties at issue in the case. In addition to injunctive relief, the decree provided that Keystone will pay $10,000 into a retrofit fund and 5,000 into a victims' compensation fund. The partial consent decree will remain in effect for three years.

On February 28, 2006, the Court entered a second partial consent decree (PDF Version) in United States v. Tanski, et al. (N.D.N.Y.). The consent decree entered on February 28, 2006, resolves the United States' claims against Howard Jacobson, an engineer who sealed the building plans used in the construction of certain non-compliant apartment buildings. The second partial consent decree requires defendant Jacobson to pay $12,000 into a retrofit fund and pay $8,000 into a victims' fund for persons who may have been harmed by the lack of accessibility, as well as requires training and other injunctive relief. The second partial consent decree will remain in effect for three years.

On October 22, 2007, the Court entered a third partial consent decree in United States v. Tanski, et al. (N.D.N.Y.). The consent decree entered on October 22, 2007, resolves the United States claims against Yates Scott Lansing, an engineer who was hired by Bruce Tanski to draw the architectural plans based on a template provided to Lansing by Bruce Tanski. The third partial consent decree requires defendant Lansing to pay $5,000 into a retrofit fund and pay $5,000 into a victims' fund for persons who may have been harmed by the lack of accessibility, as well as requires training and other injunctive relief. The third partial consent decree will remain in effect for three years.

The case was referred to the Division after the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) received a complaint, conducted an investigation and issued a charge of discrimination. United States v. Fred Thomas d/b/a Best Western Scenic Motor Inn (E.D. Ark.)

The United States has reach a settlement in this case.

The United States had filed a complaint alleging violations of Title II of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The complaint alleges that defendants denied lodging to African Americans and other minority guests; provided inferior room accommodations to guests on the basis of race, color, or national origin; and attempted to ascertain the race, color, or national origin of potential guests over the telephone in order to tell minorities that there were no rooms available.

The consent decree's requires the defendants to pay for certain measures that will be undertaken by the new owner of the motel to prevent future discrimination and to remedy the effects of the defendant's past conduct. The measures include but are not limited to training the new owner's employees, voluntary testing, affirmative marketing, and permanently posting nondiscrimination signs. The new owners have agreed to cooperate with these measures. Furthermore, defendants have agreed to not have any unsolicited contact with the new owners or any of the former employees who came forward as witnesses for the United States' case.

United States v. Thomas Development Co., et al. (D. Idaho)

On March 11, 2005, the Court entered the consent order in United States v. Thomas Development Co., et al. (D. Idaho). The complaint, filed on February 13, 2002, alleged the defendants engaged in a pattern or practice of discrimination on the basis of disability by failing to design and construct the ground floor units and public and common uses areas in compliance with the accessibility requirements of the Fair Housing Act. The complaint also alleges that some of the defendants retaliated against a tenant family at one of the complexes by attempting to evict the family after one of the family members requested a reasonable accommodation. The consent order, which includes injunctive relief and monetary payments totaling $125,000, affects over 700 ground floor apartments in 31 complexes in four states. The consent order will remain in effect for three years.

The complaint was referred to the Division by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

On October 2, 2007, the court entered a consent decree resolving United States v. Town of Chapel Hill, North Carolina (M.D.N.C.). The complaint, filed on December 12, 2005, alleged that the town violated the federal Fair Housing Act when it refused to grant a citizen of Chapel Hill an accommodation for her disabled daughter. The citizen, then a resident of public housing, had repeatedly requested a reasonable accommodation in the form of a transfer to a wheelchair-accessible unit. The city operates the Chapel Hill Department of Housing, which manages 336 public housing units sites in Chapel Hill. Under the terms of the consent decree Chapel Hill will pay $30,000 in damages to the family. The consent decree also requires the town employees to undergo training on the requirements of the Fair Housing Act and that the town adopt a reasonable accommodation policy, post non-discrimination policies, and submit periodic reports to the Division. The consent decree will remain in effect for three (3) years. The case was referred to the Division after the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) received a complaint, conducted an investigation, and issued a charge of discrimination. United States v. Town of Cicero (N.D. Ill.)

In our complaint, filed on January 21, 1993, we alleged that the Town of Cicero violated the Fair Housing Act by enacting, and then selectively enforcing, an occupancy ordinance, which restricted occupancy of some three-bedroom dwellings to as few as two persons. Our suit contended that the town had not enforced the ordinance against current residents, the majority of whom were white, but only against new purchasers of property, the majority of whom were Hispanic. The United States resolved the case with a consent order, which required the town to pay $60,000 to compensate persons who were harmed by its enforcement of the ordinance, to refrain from enforcing the ordinance, and, if it adopts a new occupancy standard, not to adopt one more restrictive than the nationally recognized building codes.

On April 18, 2007, the court entered the revised consent decree in United States v. Town of Lake Hunting and Fishing Club (C.D. Ill.), a Fair Housing Act (FHA) election referral from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The complaint, which was filed on October 5, 2005, alleged that the refusal of a residential hunting and fishing club in Momence, Illinois to allow complainants Bill and Gail Joly to install wheelchair ramps and a sidewalk at the entrances to their house and a later decision to expel them from the club constituted a refusal to allow a reasonable modification and retaliation under the FHA. The consent decree requires the defendant to pay the Jolys $40,000 in damages and attorney痴 fees, to allow the requested ramps and sidewalks to be installed, to waive all prior claims against the Jolys for past dues and attorney痴 fees, to reinstate Bill Joly as a member of the club in good standing, to send the president of its board of directors to fair housing training and to submit to the Division痴 notice and record-keeping requirements for the three-year term of the decree. At the court痴 instruction, the revised consent decree, rather than leaving the case open for three years, terminates the case immediately upon entry of the decree, but leaves the court with jurisdiction to enforce the decree during its three-year term.

United States v. Town of Maiden, NC, et al. (W.D.N.C.)

On March 17, 2000, the United States filed a complaint behalf of complainant The Hand, Inc., a corporation composed of five African-American men who wished to open a group home for children and adolescents with emotional and mental disabilities in Maiden, North Carolina. The United States alleged that the defendants discriminated against The Hand on the basis of race and disability by interfering with The Hand's efforts to locate a group home in Maiden.

On May 7, 2002, the Court signed a consent order resolving the case. The Consent Order provides that the defendants will pay $45,000 to compensate The Hand. The Order further provides that all employees of the Town of Maiden who have responsibility for zoning, planning, or approval for group homes or similar facilities must receive training in their responsibilities under the Fair Housing Act; that the Town adopt a nondiscrimination policy and distribute it to all such employees and all applicants for permits for group homes or similar facilities; that the Town must report to the United States annually for three years on applications for such permits; and that the Town will report to the United States all discrimination complaints made against the Town during the duration of the Consent Order

This case originated with a complaint filed with the Department of Housing and Urban Development. HUD issued a Charge of Discrimination and the parties elected to proceed in federal court.

On September 21, 2007, the United States filed a pattern or practice complaint in United States v. Town of St. John (N.D. Ind.), a Fair Housing Act referral from HUD alleging discrimination on the basis of disability. The complaint alleges that the Town violated the Fair Housing Act by refusing to grant a variance to a St. John's resident who wanted to allow one unrelated person with a disability to live with the resident in his single-family home.

United States v. Torino Construction Corporation of Nevada, Inc., et al.(D. Nev.)

On January 12, 2004, the Court entered a Consent Decree in United States v. Torino Construction Corporation of Nevada, Inc., et al. (D. Nev.), a Fair Housing Act pattern or practice case alleging discrimination on the basis of disability. The Division's complaint, which was filed simultaneously with the Consent Decree, alleged that defendants, Torino Construction Corporation of Nevada, Inc., Sedona Corporation, Paradise Village F&B, and Canyon Willow II, LLC, failed to design and construct Canyon Willow Condominiums in Las Vegas, Nevada, in compliance with the design and construction provisions of the Act. Under the terms of the settlement, the defendants will pay $1,500,000 to make the 360 covered ground- floor units as well as the public and common areas of the complex accessible to persons with disabilities. In addition, $75,000 will be available to compensate individuals who may have been harmed as a result of defendants' conduct. The settlement also requires defendants to pay a civil penalty of $5,000 to the United States. The consent decree will remain in effect for two and one-half years.

On September 29, 2006, the United States filed a complaint in United States v. Triple H. Realty, et al. (D. N.J.), a Fair Housing Act election case which was referred by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Eight HUD complainants, non-Jewish, Hispanic and/or African-American individuals, are former tenants of Cottage Manor Apartments in Lakewood, New Jersey. The complaint alleges that the defendants tried to force them to transfer from one building to another to make room for Orthodox Jews whom were courted as tenants in 2002-2004; that they were threatened if they objected; and, that the buildings in which non-Jewish tenants lived in the rear of the property had fewer amenities and were less well maintained than buildings at the front of the property that housed the new Jewish tenants. The complaint also alleges that the incoming Jewish tenants paid less rent for apartments comparable to theirs. The United States also alleges that the defendants' conduct constitutes a pattern or practice of discrimination and a denial of rights to a group of persons.

On June 7, 2004, the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Mississippi entered into a Mutual Settlement Agreement and Release in United States v. Silas J. Tucker (S.D. Miss.). The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) referred this matter to the Division after determining that the respondent had failed to comply with the damages and civil penalty provisions of the Secretary's Final Decision and Order. HUD's Order found that the respondent had violated the Fair Housing Act by discriminating against the two HUD complainants based on their race. On December 11, 2003, the Appellate Section obtained a judgment from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit enforcing the Order. The Division then referred the case to the U.S. Attorney's Office's Financial Litigation Unit (FLU) for collection of the judgment. The settlement agreement provides for $10,000 for the two complainants and the waiver of HUD's civil penalty.

United States v. Tunica County School District, (N.D. Miss.)

In connection with the provisions of our consent decree, with the Tunica County School District and the construction of a new elementary school in Tunica, the county's board of supervisors has adopted a resolution to implement a county-wide affordable housing plan. Under that plan, the county will provide housing counseling services, home buyer seminars, and fair housing training. This plan includes working with the North Delta Planning Development District, a regional planning commission, to create developer incentives for construction of affordable housing in the county and the Mississippi Home Corporation, a state housing finance agency, to provide funding for the county's counseling and education program and to develop affordable housing in the county. As part of the order, the school district has agreed to market the services of the affordable housing plan to families with school age children, to make school facilities available for housing-related activities, and to use a state mortgage assistance program for teachers as a marketing tool to attract and keep teachers in the district.

On September 30, 2005, the United States filed a complaint and consent order in United States v. Twining Services Corporation ("TSC") (E.D. Penn.), a pattern or practice case brought under the Fair Housing Act. TSC owns and operates Twining Village, a 400-unit continuing care retirement community that, until February 2005, banned manual wheelchairs from its dining rooms and continued to ban motorized wheelchairs and scooters from those rooms and other public and common use areas. It also required persons who use scooters to indemnify TSC and to submit to an evaluation and training program annually, even if there was no reason to think the person had difficulty operating the scooter safely. Under the terms of the consent order, TSC will adopt a policy prohibiting discrimination on the basis of disability such that residents of Twining Village who have physical disabilities that require the use of mobility aids may use such aids throughout the entire Twining Village complex, without the requirement for indemnification or annual evaluations. TSC will pay a resident aggrieved by the former policies $17,500 in damages, establish a $67,500 settlement fund, and pay a $7,500 civil penalty to the United States. The consent order also calls for employee training, record keeping, and monitoring through the use of testers, if necessary. The Consent order will remain in effect for three years.

On November 12, 2003, the Court entered a Consent Order resolving United States v. Urban Rental Company, et al., Case No. 02-3244 (C.D. Ill.). The complaint alleged that the defendants, the owners and managers of the Urban Mobile Home Village in Taylorville, Illinois, discriminated on the basis of race or color in connection with the rental of a mobile home space to an African-American couple. The Consent Order requires the defendants to pay $3,500 to the two HUD complainants. In addition, the consent order also: enjoins the defendants from violating the Fair Housing Act on the basis of race or color; requires the individual defendants to undergo training on the provisions of the Fair Housing Act pertaining to racial discrimination; display fair housing posters and use the fair housing logo in all advertising, and advise the United States of any complaints regarding discrimination on the basis of race or color or retaliation. The consent order will remain in effect for two years.

The case was referred to the Division after the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) received a complaint, conducted an investigation and issued a charge of discrimination. The case was handled by the United States Attorney's Office for the Central District of Illinois.

On October 27, 2005, the Court entered a consent decree resolving United States v. Urbana MHP, LLC (S.D. Ohio). The complaint alleged that the owners and property managers of a mobile home park in Urbana, Ohio discriminated against the complainants on the basis of race. The consent decree requires the defendants to pay $18,750 in damages to complainants and contains standard injunctive relief, training, advertising and reporting provisions. The consent decree will remain in effect for two years.

The case was referred to the Division after the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) received a complaint, conducted an investigation, and issued a charge of discrimination.

On October 8, 2004, the United States filed a Rule 41 Dismissal with an attached Settlement Agreement in United States v. Vancouver Housing Authority (W.D. Wash.). This Fair Housing Act pattern or practice lawsuit was filed on September 24, 2004, against the Vancouver Housing Authority, the Department of Social and Health Services of the State of Washington, Coldwater Springs Assisted Living Community, LLC, Emeritus Corporation, Sunwest Management, Inc., and James D. Reed, the former onsite manager of the facilities. The suit alleged the defendants discriminated against disabled residents by, among other things, forcing persons who required assisted living services to either move to an inaccessible apartment or to give up their assisted living services in order to stay in their current home, and by evicting or constructively evicting persons because of their disabilities, including persons who used wheelchairs and those with the most severe disabilities.

Under the settlement, the defendants will pay a total of $100,000 to persons with disabilities who were evicted from their apartments because they used wheelchairs or who were otherwise harmed by allegedly discriminatory changes made in the operation of a program that provided assisted living services to some building residents. The defendants will pay for the establishment of special needs trusts to ensure that recipients of these payments do not lose their eligibility for Medicaid. In addition, defendant Vancouver Housing Authority will retrofit two units in one of the public housing buildings to make them accessible to persons with disabilities. The defendants will also be required to make meals, lectures, social events and other activities sponsored by the assisted living program available to all building residents, and staff will receive training regarding their obligations under the Act. The case was originally referred to the Division by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

On April 18, 2002, the Court entered a Consent Order resolving United States v. Vanderpool, et al., (D. Idaho). The complaint, filed February 23, 2001, alleged that the V.L.V. Company and its principal, Virginia L. Vanderpool, who built Baycrest, T&J Properties, its original owner, and Pinnacle Engineers, who designed Baycrest failed to design and construct the complex with accessible features required by federal law. The Division's investigation revealed that the complex had numerous barriers to accessibility steps including: steps at the front entry door of apartment units; bathrooms and kitchens that lack adequate maneuvering space to be usable by persons with disabilities; bathrooms that lack reinforcements for grab bars; and electrical outlets and thermostats placed at inaccessible heights for persons who use wheelchairs. The new owners of Baycrest Village, Baycrest LLC, who are not a party to the lawsuit, agreed to allow defendants to correct these and other deficiencies.

The builder and civil engineer of Baycrest Village in Caldwell, Idaho has agreed to settle the lawsuit by retrofitting an eighteen unit apartment complex to make it accessible to persons with disabilities and by paying up to $48,000 in damages and penalties.

Specifically, the defendants have agreed to modify the common areas and the individual apartment units within one year to make them accessible to persons with disabilities; pay up to $30,000 to compensate persons who have been harmed by the lack of accessible features at Baycrest, such as persons using wheelchairs who tried to live at Baycrest and were unable to do so; pay $3,000 in damages to the Intermountain Fair Housing Council; pay $5,000 to a nonprofit organization to increase accessible housing for persons with disabilities in Idaho; pay $5000 to the United States in civil penalties; and pay $5000 to the current owner of Baycrest to compensate her for the lost rent and inconvenience resulting from the modifications.

This case was brought on behalf of the Intermountain Fair Housing Council of Boise, who filed the original complaint with the Department of Housing and Urban Development. HUD investigated the complaint and referred the matter to the United States after determining that the complex was not accessible to persons with disabilities.

On August 31, 1999, the court entered a consent decree in United States v. Vernon, et al., (D.N.M.), resolving a case alleging that Monterey Manor Apartments, located in Albuquerque, New Mexico, engaged in a pattern or practice of discriminating against African Americans and families with children. The complaint, filed on July 22, 1998, alleged that the defendants violated the Federal Fair Housing Act by falsely informing African American apartment seekers that there were no apartments available and unlawfully discouraging people with children from living in the complex. This case was based in part on evidence developed through the Division's testing program.

The consent decree contains an admission of liability by the former resident manager, who was a defendant, and provides a total of $75,000 in monetary relief, divided as follows: (a) $10,000 to each of two identified aggrieved persons; (b) $20,000 to be placed in a settlement fund for as yet unidentified victims, with any leftover funds going to the Albuquerque Legal Aid Society; (c) $9,000 to the Legal Aid Society; (d) $25,000 in civil penalties against the owner of the complex; and (e) $1,000 in civil penalties against the former resident manager. The decree also contains injunctive relief, including: fair housing training; implementation and advertise of non-discriminatory rental policies; and payment for self-testing. The consent decree will remain in effect for four years.

On December 13, 2006, the court entered a consent decree in United States v. Village of South Elgin, (N.D. Ill.). In this pattern or practice case under the Fair Housing Act, the Division alleged that the defendant municipality discriminated against Unity House, a "sober home" providing a supportive environment for recovering alcoholics and drug users, by denying it a permit to house up to nine residents. The home had operated from 2000 to 2003 without a permit, because the owner believed he was not required to obtain one. After the permit was denied, Unity House continued to operate legally with five residents. The complaint, filed on September 15, 2005, alleged that the Village Board's actions were taken on account of the disability of the residents, in violation of Section 804(f)(1) of the Fair Housing Act, and also that the Village failed to make a reasonable accommodation in violation of Section 804(f)(3)(b).

Defendants moved to dismiss pursuant to Rules 12(b)(1) and 12(b)(6), on the grounds that in seeking a reasonable accommodation, Unity House had not complied with the procedural requirements of state zoning law. On March 6, 2006, Judge Amy St. Eve denied defendant's motion to dismiss. In denying the motion, the Court agreed with our argument that (1) assuming this to be true, it would not affect our entitlement to recover under an intentional discrimination theory, and (2) whether Unity House complied with the state law involves disputed issues of fact.

Under the consent decree the Village agreed to grant Unity House a permit to house seven residents; the permit was granted by the Village Board on December 5, 2006. The Village will pay $25,000 in monetary damages to the owner, and $7,500 to each of two residents who were forced to leave the home in 2003, as well as a $15,000 civil penalty. The decree also provides for training of employees and record-keeping and reporting. This matter was litigated jointly by this Section and the United States Attorney's Office.

On December 28, 2004, the district court for the District of New Mexico entered a Default Judgment in United States and Ramirez v. Villegas (D.N.M.). The complaint alleged that defendants Javier Villegas, the owner of a rental trailer in Albuquerque, and Jose Villegas, the adult son of Javier Villegas, breached a Department of Housing and Urban Development conciliation agreement by failing to pay $1,500 to complainants who had alleged sexual harassment. The Default Judgment requires defendants to pay the $1,500 required under the conciliation agreement and permanently enjoins defendants from violating the Fair Housing Act.

This case is being handled primarily by the U.S. Attorney's Office.

On September 6, 2006, the court entered a consent decree in United States v. Daniel Waisbord, et al. (E.D. Pa.) The complaint, filed on March 15, 2006, alleged the defendants discriminated on the basis of race when they refused to rent an apartment to an African-American woman and stated the neighbors would not like it. The defendants eventually rented the unit to a white woman at a lower rent than had been discussed with the complainant.

Under the consent decree the defendants are required to pay $40,000 in monetary damages to the complainant, undergo training, adopt and post a nondiscrimination policy, and provide reports to the Division. The consent decree will remain in effect for three years.

The case was referred to the Division after the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) received a complaint, conducted an investigation, and issued a charge of discrimination.

On June 27, 2001, the Court entered a consent order resolving United States v. Earl Walker d/b/a/ The Knights, (M.D. Ga.), a Title II case involving discrimination on the basis of race. In its Complaint, filed January 18, 2001, the United States alleged that the defendant had engaged in a pattern or practice of denying to African-American persons, on the basis of their race, the full and equal use and enjoyment of the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, and accommodations of Club 2000. Specifically, the United States alleged that the defendant refused to serve African-American persons entering the nightclub. The nightclub was located in Valdosta, Georgia and had a clientele that consisted, in part, of servicemen and servicewomen of the United States Air Force stationed at nearby Moody Air Force Base in Georgia.

The consent order: enjoins the defendants from future discrimination; requires posting of a non-discriminatory policy at the entrance; requires modification of the admissions policy; training of employees regarding the requirements of Title II; reporting of complaints of discrimination; advertise in the local military papers; and certain other reporting requirements. The consent decree will remain in effect for three years.

On May 23, 2002, the Court entered a Consent Decree resolving United States v. Wallace III, et al., (S.D. Miss.). The complaint, filed on December 12, 2000, alleged Alden "Bubber"Wallace, III, his wife Priscilla Wallace, and his mother Nell Wallace of violating the Federal Fair Housing Act by discriminating on the basis of race. Specifically, the complaint alleged that defendants divided their Meridian, Mississippi rental properties into better quality "white" or "No. 1" homes and inferior quality "black" or "No. 2" homes and used racially coded vacancy lists and telephone logs to segregate and exclude African-Americans from apartment complexes, trailer parks and other properties. The complaint also named four local companies, Amerihomes, LLC, The Management Group, LLC, Wallace Management & Developers, Inc. and Wallace Rentals, LLC as co-defendants.

The Consent Decree required the Wallaces and their co-defendants to pay a $20,000 civil penalty and $310,000 for a victims fund. The fund will compensate victims of the alleged discrimination.

In addition, the defendants must turn over management of their more than 200 residential properties to an outside company. The settlement permanently bars Mr. Wallace, his wife, and his mother from any involvement in tenant affairs, including tenant selection, maintenance and evictions. Mr. Wallace is prohibited from entering the rental properties unless they are vacant and he is escorted by management company staff. The settlement also provides for fair housing training, implementation of new policies and five years of monitoring.

The United States Attorney's Office jointly investigated and litigated the case in cooperation with the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division.

United States v. Webb, et al. (E.D. Ark.)

On September 27, 2001, the Court entered a Consent Decree resolving United States v. Webb, et al., (E.D. Ark.). The complaint, filed on September 20, 2000, alleged that the Defendants, James P. Matthews, Lakewood House L.L.P., The Woodcrest Company L.L.P, The Crestwood Company, James W. Webb, Dianna S. Webb and General Properties Inc., who are the current and former owners and managers of the Lakewood House Apartments in North Little Rock, violated the Fair Housing Act on the basis of race when then they refused to rent an apartment at Lakewood House Apartments to an interracial couple and their child.

The consent decree requires the defendants to: pay $27,000 to the complainants; submit to injunctive relief and monitoring; adopt non-discriminatory advertisements, and maintain records of their rental activities. The consent decree will remain in effect for three years.

On November 25, 2002, the court approved and entered the parties' Consent Decree in United States v. Westwater Commons Corp., (S.D.N.Y.), a housing discrimination case that was handled by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York. The complaint, filed on July 7, 2002, alleged that the defendant, a cooperative housing development, discriminated against a woman and her two minor children on the basis of familial status by refusing to sell her a two-bedroom apartment because a Board member did not want the apartment above her to be occupied by children. The Consent Decree requires the defendant to pay her $102,500 in damages. The Decree enjoins the defendant from discriminating on the basis of familial status in the future, and specifically prohibits it from asking applicants whether they have children or intend to have children. The Decree also contains mandatory fair housing training and reporting and record-keeping provisions. The Consent Decree will remain in effect for three years.

The case was originally referred to the Division after the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) received a complaint, conducted an investigated and issued a charge of discrimination.

United States v. Wones, et al., (D. Minn.)

On September 1, 2006, the Court entered a Consent Decree resolving United States v. Wones, et al., (D. Minn.), a Fair Housing Act pattern or practice case alleging sex discrimination. The complaint, filed on December 16, 2004, alleged that the defendant subjected female tenants to conduct including, but 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 apartments of female tenants without permission or notice; and taking adverse action against female tenants when they refused or objected to his sexual advances.

The consent decree, which has a five year term, contains the following substantive provisions: 1) general injunctive relief that prohibits each defendant from discriminating in the terms, conditions, or privileges of renting an apartment; 2) a requirement that Robert Wones, who is currently not in the rental business, hire an independent management company, in the event that he acquires more rental property in the Minneapolis area, to take over daily management of each property pursuant to specified guidelines in the decree; and 3) a requirement that Defendants must pay a total of $352,500 to 20 identified aggrieved persons and a $35,000 civil penalty.

Document updated June 20, 2008 > >
Updated August 6, 2015

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