2002

2002 issues of The Advocate

Chicago area developer to pay $423,000 to retrofit units and settle disability discrimination claims

The United States Department of Justice settled fair housing claims against a Chicago area developer for $40,000 in damages, $3,000 in penalties, and an estimated $380,000 in retrofitting costs for a Naperville, Illinois apartment complex to make it accessible to persons with disabilities.

Los Angeles federal jury awards $500,000 to mixed-race family denied rental house

The Mitchell-Young family, a mixed race family that attempted to rent a home in Los Angeles, will collect $252,002 in judgments from Isaac Soleyman, a landlord who denied them a rental house because one member of their family was African American. A federal jury had awarded the family $500,000, but the figure was later reduced by U.S. District Judge Howard Matz. In a ruling reducing the award, Judge Matz claimed that the Plaintiffs had not proven that the children had been injured sufficiently to deserve $125,000 each in damages.

Southern California web site agrees to pay $15,000 and put fair housing pop-ups on real estate pages

Southern California’s largest web site service for rental opportunities will pay $15,000 and make sweeping changes to its web site pursuant to a federal court Consent Decree obtained by the Southern California Housing Rights Center (HRC). Under the Consent Decree and Final Order, signed by Judge Dickran Tevrizian on April 18, 2002, Westside Rentals must display a prominent antidiscrimination message on each of its website’s three pages.

African American man receives $97,500 from AZ complex after being evicted for dating white women

A conciliation conference in April 2001 yielded a $97,500 settlement in a racial discrimination case in Mesa, Arizona. The settlement resolves claims by Morsellor Ector that he, an African American man, was evicted from his apartment because he dated white women. 

In June 1997, Ector went to pay his rent at Epernay Apartments. The rental manager, Tamala Daniels, asked Ector if he had been dating white women.

African American real estate agent wins $100,000 jury verdict against Alabama real estate company

A federal jury in Alabama awarded an African American real estate agent $100,000 in compensatory and punitive damages in April. The award was against Montgomery real estate company Lowder Realty in a racial discrimination case. The agent, P.R. Hall, charged the company with steering business to real estate agents based on race.

Federal judge upholds $100,500 jury award in Louisiana racial discrimination case

A federal judge in New Orleans left intact a $100,500 jury award in a housing discrimination case filed against a Lakeview, Louisiana landlord. The eight-member jury, drawn from a thirteen-parish area including Jefferson, Orleans, Terrebone, and St. Tammany Parishes, reached the verdict on January 24, 2002. Federal District Judge Ginger Berrigan upheld the award in a ruling on February 27, 2002.

The jury found that Walter Case discriminated against Lisa Lincoln and Don Weaver, an interracial couple who had attempted to rent an apartment in November 1999.

African American family and real estate agent win $135,040 in Mississippi racial intimidation case

United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Administrative Law Judge Robert Andretta has ordered a Mississippi man to pay $135,040 for threatening and intimidating an African American family. Chris Hope made violent threats and told Michael and Pamela Keys, an African American couple with three children, that he and his neighbors did not want African Americans in his neighborhood.

Andretta's May 8, 2002 order awarded $125,000 to the Keys and $7,500 to real estate agent Katherine Beard for the "intangible harm" of Hope's discrimination.

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