In The United States District Court For The Eastern District Of Wisconsin



UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,

            Plaintiff,

No.

v.

RENEE DEMLER

          Defendant.

COMPLAINT

The United States of America alleges:

1. This action is brought by the United States of America on behalf of Alicia Patterson pursuant to Section 812(o) of the Fair Housing Act, as amended, 42 U.S.C. §3612(o).

2. This Court has jurisdiction over this action pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §§1331 and 1345 and 42 U.S.C. §§3612(o).

3. Defendant Renee Demler owns and manages an eight-unit apartment building, which is located at 6653 N. Bourbon Street, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

FACTUAL ALLEGATIONS

4. At all times relevant to the allegations contained herein, Renee Demler ("Defendant") owned and managed the subject property, an eight-unit apartment building located at 6653 N. Bourbon Street, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The apartment building has two floors, with four apartments on the first floor and four apartments on the second floor. The apartment building is a dwelling within the meaning of Section 802(b) of the Fair Housing Act, as amended, 42 U.S.C. §3602(b).

5. On or about January 29, 2002, Alicia Patterson was approximately eight months pregnant, and she asked the Defendant if she could rent a second floor apartment located at 6654 N. Bourbon Street, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, which the Defendant had advertised for rental. The Defendant told Ms. Patterson that she would not rent the apartment to her because she would not rent it to someone with a child.

6. On August 19, 2002, Ms. Patterson filed a complaint of discrimination (HUD Form 903) with the Department of Housing and Urban Development ("HUD") alleging that Defendant discriminated against her on the basis of familial status, in violation of the Fair Housing Act, as amended, 42 U.S.C. §§3601, et seq.

7. Pursuant to the requirements of 42 U.S.C. §§3610(a) and (b), the Secretary of HUD ("Secretary") conducted and completed an investigation of the complaint and engaged in conciliation efforts, which were unsuccessful.

8. Thereafter, the Secretary prepared a final investigative report based upon information gathered during the investigation, and the Secretary, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §3610(g)(1), determined that there was reasonable cause to believe that discriminatory housing practices had occurred. HUD issued its Determination of Reasonable Cause, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §3610(a)(2)(A), on July 20, 2004.

9. HUD issued its Charge of Discrimination against the Defendant on July 22, 2004, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §§3610(g)(2)(A), charging Defendant with engaging in discriminatory housing practices in violation of the Fair Housing Act, as amended, 42 U.S.C. §§3601, et seq.

10. On August 16, 2004, Renee Demler made a timely election to have the claims of Alicia Patterson resolved in federal court, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §3612(a).

11. On August 17, 2004, the Chief Administrative Law Judge issued a Notice of Election and terminated the administrative proceeding on the complaint filed by Ms. Patterson.

12. Subsequently, on or about August 18, 2004, the Secretary, through the General Counsel of HUD, authorized the Attorney General to file this action on behalf of the Complainants, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §3612(o)(1).

13. Defendant Renee, has discriminated against Alicia Patterson by:

  1. denying, or refusing to negotiate for the rental of, or otherwise making a dwelling unavailable on the basis of familial status, in violation of Section 804(a) of the Fair Housing Act, as amended, 42 U.S.C. §3604(a);
  2. discriminating in the terms, conditions or privileges of the rental of a dwelling, or in the provision of services or facilities in connection therewith, on the basis of familial status, in violation of Section 804(b) of the Fair Housing Act, as amended, 42 U.S.C. §3604(b); and
  3. making, printing or publishing, or causing to be made, printed or published notices or statements with respect to the rental of a dwelling that indicate a preference, limitation, or discrimination, based on familial status, or an intention to make any such preference, limitation, or discrimination in violation of Section 804(c) of the Fair Housing Act, as amended, 42 U.S.C. §3604(c).

14. As a result of the conduct or actions of the Defendant, Alicia Patterson suffered damages she is an aggrieved person within the meaning of 42 U.S.C. §3602(i).

15. The discriminatory conduct or actions of the Defendant were intentional, willful, and taken in disregard of the rights of Alicia Patterson.

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

1. Declares that the discriminatory housing practices of Renne Demler, as set forth above, violate the Fair Housing Act, as amended, 42 U.S.C. §§3601, et seq.;

2. Enjoins Renee Demler, her employees, agents, successors, and all other persons in active concert or participation with any of them, from continuing to discriminate on the basis of familial status against any person in any aspect of the rental of a dwelling, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §§3612(o)(3) and 3613(c)(1) and 3614(d)(1)(A); and

3. Awards monetary damages to Alicia Patterson as a result of the discriminatory housing practices of Renee Demler pursuant to 42 U.S.C. §§3612(o)(3) and 3613(c)(1); and

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

JOHN ASHCROFT
Attorney General


STEVEN M. BISKUPIC
United States Attorney

MATTHEW V. RICHMOND
Chief, Civil Division
517 East Wisconsin Avenue
Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53202
Tel: (414) 297-1700

R. ALEXANDER ACOSTA
Assistant Attorney General _____________________________
STEVEN H. ROSENBAUM
Chief, Housing and Civil
Enforcement Section _____________________________
TIMOTHY J. MORAN
Deputy Chief
MICHAEL L. BARRETT
Trial Attorney
U.S. Department of Justice
Civil Rights Division
Housing and Civil
Enforcement Section - G St.
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20530
Tel: (202) 514-2447
Fax: (202) 514-1116

Document Filed: September 15, 2004 > >
Updated August 6, 2015

Was this page helpful?

Was this page helpful?
Yes No