Case: Fair Housing Center of Washtenaw County and United States v. Acme Investments, Inc.

2:09-cv-12815 | U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan

Filed Date: July 16, 2009

Closed Date: Jan. 6, 2014

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

This case consolidated two separate fair housing lawsuits, which were then settled together. The Fair Housing Center of Washtenaw County, Inc. (also known as the Fair Housing Center of Southeastern Michigan), filed the first action in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. The suit, filed July 16, 2009, alleged that Acme Investments, Inc., which owned and operated Ivanhoe House Apartments, in Ann Arbor, Michigan, of systematic discrimination against African Americans in …

This case consolidated two separate fair housing lawsuits, which were then settled together.

The Fair Housing Center of Washtenaw County, Inc. (also known as the Fair Housing Center of Southeastern Michigan), filed the first action in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. The suit, filed July 16, 2009, alleged that Acme Investments, Inc., which owned and operated Ivanhoe House Apartments, in Ann Arbor, Michigan, of systematic discrimination against African Americans in violation of the Fair Housing Act ("FHA"), 42 U.S.C. § 3601 et seq., the Civil Rights Acts of 1866 and 1870, 42 U.S.C. §§ 1981 and 1982, and the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act, M.C.L. § 37.2501 et seq. On March 3, 2010, the United States filed a similar action against the same defendants in the same court, Civil Action No. 2:10-cv-10853, to enforce the provisions of Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968, as amended by the Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988, 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601 et seq. The case had been developed through testing, which revealed that Acme employees frequently told African American persons that no units were available while simultaneously telling white persons units were available to rent or inspect. They also refused to process applications by African Americans. The cases sought declaratory, injunctive, and monetary relief, along with civil penalties. Judge Sean Cox consolidated the two cases on March 31, 2010.

The parties entered settlement negotiations and on July 7, 2010, the Court entered a three-year consent decree for the parties. The Consent Decree forbids discrimination, and includes provisions requiring training, public notice, and record-keeping. Defendants agreed to pay $35,000 to the aggrieved persons, $40,000 to the Fair Housing Center, and a $7,500 civil penalty.

There was no further docket activity until 2013. On July 2, the court extended the Consent Decree to Jan. 6, 2014. There is no subsequent docket activity, and the case appears to now be closed.

Summary Authors

Virginia Weeks (2/22/2018)

People

For PACER's information on parties and their attorneys, see: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/4291533/parties/fair-housing-center-of-washtenaw-county-incorporated-v-acme-investments/


Judge(s)

Cox, Sean Francis (Michigan)

Majzoub, Mona K. (Michigan)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Holder, Eric H. Jr. (District of Columbia)

Levy, Judith Ellen (Michigan)

Lincoln, Holly C. (District of Columbia)

McQuade, Barbara L. (Michigan)

Moran, Timothy (District of Columbia)

Perez, Thomas E. (District of Columbia)

Rosenbaum, Steven H. (District of Columbia)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Pitts, Stanley (Michigan)

Judge(s)

Cox, Sean Francis (Michigan)

Majzoub, Mona K. (Michigan)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Holder, Eric H. Jr. (District of Columbia)

Levy, Judith Ellen (Michigan)

Lincoln, Holly C. (District of Columbia)

McQuade, Barbara L. (Michigan)

Moran, Timothy (District of Columbia)

Perez, Thomas E. (District of Columbia)

Rosenbaum, Steven H. (District of Columbia)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Pitts, Stanley (Michigan)

Quinn, Brian (Michigan)

Other Attorney(s)

Chang, D. Scott (District of Columbia)

Dane, Stephen M. (District of Columbia)

Tomkowiak, Steve (Michigan)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

Docket

Fair Housing Center of Washtenaw County v. Acme Investments, Inc.

July 6, 2010 Docket

Docket

United States of America v. Acme Investments, Inc.

July 2, 2013 Docket
1

Complaint for Injunctive, Declaratory, and Monetary Relief

Fair Center Housing of Washtenaw County, Inc. v. Acme Investments, Inc.

July 16, 2009 Complaint
1

Complaint

United States v. Acme Investments, Inc.

March 3, 2010 Complaint
18

Consent Order

United States v. Acme Investments, Inc.

July 6, 2010 Settlement Agreement

Resources

Title Description External URL

Analysis of Impediments to Fair Housing Choice in Non-Entitled Areas of the State

Maryellen J. Lewis, Clifford C. Schrupp, Pamela Kisch, Robert Ells, Nancy Haynes

This Statewide Analysis of Impediments to Fair Housing Choice 1998-2007 is submitted to the Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA) in accordance with requirements of the U.S. Departmen… Dec. 15, 2008 https://www.michigan.gov/documents/mshda/mshda_cd_ai_dec_2008_356649_7.pdf

Docket

See docket on RECAP: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/4291533/fair-housing-center-of-washtenaw-county-incorporated-v-acme-investments/

Last updated May 11, 2022, 8 p.m.

ECF Number Description Date Link
1

COMPLAINT for Injuctive, Declaratory and Monetary Relief filed by Fair Housing Center of Washtenaw County, Incorporated against Acme Investments, Incorporated, Laurie Courtney with Jury Demand. Plaintiff requests summons issued. Receipt No: 06450000000002071983 - Fee: $ 350. County of 1st Plaintiff: Washtenaw Coutny - County Where Action Arose: Washtenaw County - County of 1st Defendant: Oakland County. [Previously dismissed case: No] [Possible companion case(s): None] (Dane, Stephen) (Entered: 07/16/2009)

July 16, 2009 PACER
2

NOTICE of Appearance by Steve Tomkowiak on behalf of Fair Housing Center of Washtenaw County, Incorporated. (Tomkowiak, Steve) (Entered: 07/17/2009)

July 17, 2009 PACER
3

SUMMONS Issued for *Acme Investments, Incorporated, Laurie Courtney* (SSch) (Entered: 07/20/2009)

July 20, 2009 PACER
4

NOTICE of Appearance by D. Scott Chang on behalf of Fair Housing Center of Washtenaw County, Incorporated. (Chang, D.) (Entered: 11/02/2009)

Nov. 2, 2009 PACER
5

STIPULATION AND ORDER Extending Time for Defendants to Respond re 1 Complaint. Responsive pleading due 1/4/2010. Signed by District Judge Sean F Cox. (JHer) (Entered: 11/10/2009)

Nov. 10, 2009 PACER
6

NOTICE of Appearance by Brian T. Quinn on behalf of Acme Investments, Incorporated, Laurie Courtney. (Quinn, Brian) (Entered: 03/08/2010)

March 8, 2010 PACER
7

NOTICE TO APPEAR: Scheduling Conference set for 3/31/2010 03:30 PM before District Judge Sean F Cox (JHer) (Entered: 03/22/2010)

March 22, 2010 PACER
8

ORDER consolidating cases 09-12815 and 10-10853 Signed by District Judge Sean F Cox. (PPau) (Entered: 04/02/2010)

April 2, 2010 PACER
9

Notice to Parties Regarding Consolidated Case: Order of consolidation entered on *4/2/10*. Designated lead case number is *09-12815*. (PPau) (Entered: 04/02/2010)

April 2, 2010 PACER
10

SCHEDULING ORDER: Discovery due by 11/30/2010 Motion Cut-off set for 12/28/2010 Final Pretrial Conference set for 4/4/2011 02:00 PM before District Judge Sean F Cox Trailing Trial Docket set for May/June 2011 Signed by District Judge Sean F Cox. (Refer to image for additional dates) (JHer) (Entered: 04/02/2010)

April 2, 2010 PACER
11

ORDER REFERRING OTHER MATTERS to *Magistrate Judge Majzoub* : *Settlement Conference*. Signed by District Judge Sean F Cox. (JHer) (Entered: 04/02/2010)

April 2, 2010 PACER
12

NOTICE AND ORDER TO APPEAR: Settlement Conference set for 12/9/2010 @ 09:30 AM before Magistrate Judge Mona K Majzoub (LBar) (Entered: 04/06/2010)

April 6, 2010 PACER
13

AMENDED NOTICE AND ORDER TO APPEAR: Settlement Conference re-set for 5/18/2010 10:30 AM before Magistrate Judge Mona K Majzoub (LBar) (Entered: 04/07/2010)

April 7, 2010 PACER
14

ANSWER to Complaint with Affirmative Defenses /Additional Defenses by All Defendants. (Quinn, Brian) (Entered: 04/14/2010)

April 14, 2010 PACER
15

ANSWER to Complaint with Affirmative Defenses /Additional Defenses -Answer to Complaint filed in 2:10-cv-10853 by All Defendants. (Quinn, Brian) (Entered: 04/14/2010)

April 14, 2010 PACER
16

NOTICE of Appearance by Holly C. Lincoln on behalf of United States of America. (Lincoln, Holly) (Entered: 04/26/2010)

April 26, 2010 PACER
17

ATTORNEY APPEARANCE: Stanley H. Pitts appearing on behalf of All Defendants (Pitts, Stanley) (Entered: 05/04/2010)

May 4, 2010 PACER
18

CONSENT ORDER Signed by District Judge Sean F Cox. (BSoc) (Entered: 07/07/2010)

July 6, 2010 RECAP

State / Territory: Michigan

Case Type(s):

Fair Housing/Lending/Insurance

Key Dates

Filing Date: July 16, 2009

Closing Date: Jan. 6, 2014

Case Ongoing: No

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

United States Department of Justice and the Fair Housing Center of Washtenaw County

Plaintiff Type(s):

Private Plaintiff

U.S. Dept of Justice plaintiff

Attorney Organizations:

U.S. Dept. of Justice Civil Rights Division

Relman, Dane & Colfax

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: No

Class Action Outcome: Not sought

Defendants

Acme Investments, Inc. (Troy), Private Entity/Person

Ivanhoe Apartments (Ann Arbor), Private Entity/Person

Defendant Type(s):

Multi-family housing provider

Case Details

Causes of Action:

Fair Housing Act/Fair Housing Amendments Act (FHAA), 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601 et seq.

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Monetary Relief

Injunctive (or Injunctive-like) Relief

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Plaintiff

Nature of Relief:

Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement

Damages

Source of Relief:

Settlement

Form of Settlement:

Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree

Amount Defendant Pays: 82,500

Order Duration: 2010 - 2013

Content of Injunction:

Comply with advertising/recruiting requirements

Develop anti-discrimination policy

Discrimination Prohibition

Implement complaint/dispute resolution process

Provide antidiscrimination training

Recordkeeping

Reporting

Issues

General:

Disparate Treatment

Housing

Pattern or Practice

Record-keeping

Records Disclosure

Discrimination-area:

Housing Sales/Rental

Discrimination-basis:

Race discrimination

Race:

Black