Skip to main content
Press Release

Justice Department Files Sexual Harassment Lawsuit Against Kentucky Rental Property Owner

For Immediate Release
Office of Public Affairs

The Justice Department announced today that it has filed a lawsuit against the owner and operator of rental properties in the Pulaski County, Kentucky, area for engaging in sexual harassment and retaliation in violation of the Fair Housing Act.

The lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky, alleges that Danny T. Bell sexually harassed numerous female tenants since at least 2010. According to the complaint, Bell made repeated and unwelcome sexual comments to female tenants, entered the homes of female tenants without their consent, touched female tenants’ bodies without their consent, offered reduced or free rent in exchange for sexual contact and took adverse housing-related actions against female tenants who refused his sexual advances.

“Everyone deserves to feel safe at home, and sexual harassment in housing destroys that feeling of security,” said Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. “The Justice Department will continue to vigorously enforce the Fair Housing Act to protect tenants from harassment and retaliation by their landlords.”

“Whenever sexual harassment in housing erodes the security and sanctity of a person’s home, it is more than a shame – it is a violation of the law,” said U.S. Attorney Carlton S. Shier IV for the Eastern District of Kentucky. “We are committed to doing our part to enforcing the law and ensuring the protections of the Fair Housing Act.”

The lawsuit seeks monetary damages to compensate persons harmed by the alleged harassment, a civil penalty to vindicate the public interest and a court order barring future discrimination.

The Justice Department launched its Sexual Harassment in Housing Initiative in October 2017.  The department’s initiative is led by the Civil Rights Division, in coordination with U.S. Attorneys’ Offices across the country. The initiative seeks to address and raise awareness about sexual harassment by landlords, property managers, maintenance workers, loan officers and other people who have control over housing. Since launching the initiative, the department has filed 30 lawsuits alleging sexual harassment in housing and recovered over $9.8 million for victims of such harassment.    

The Fair Housing Act prohibits discrimination in housing based on sex, race, color, religion, national origin, disability and familial status.  Individuals who believe that they may have been victims of sexual harassment or other types of housing discrimination at rental dwellings owned or managed by Bell, or who have other information that may be relevant to this case, may contact the Housing Discrimination Tip Line at 1-833-591-0291, select a language, and select option number 2, then option number 8 to leave a message. Individuals may also e-mail the department at or submit a report online. Reports also may be made by contacting the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development at 1-800-669-9777 or by filing a complaint online.

The complaint contains allegations of unlawful conduct. The allegations must be proven in federal court.

Updated April 17, 2023

Civil Rights
Fair Housing
Press Release Number: 23-428