JUSTICE DEPARTMENT ANNOUNCES FAVORABLE DECISION IN SUIT REGARDING HOUSING DISCRIMINATION AGAINST MILITARY FAMILY
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Justice Department today announced a favorable
decision in a housing discrimination lawsuit it brought on behalf of an Air
Force Captain and his wife.
Judge David R. Herndon of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of
Missouri ruled that the landlord, Mr. Kenneth Brosh refused to rent to the
couple because they had children, in violation of the federal Fair Housing
Act. Judge Herndon ordered the landlord to pay $15,445 in damages to the
The Fair Housing Act prohibits discrimination against families with
children, said R. Alexander Acosta, Assistant Attorney General for Civil
Rights. The courts decision makes crystal clear the consequences for
violating this law. We are especially pleased to right a wrong done to member
of the armed forces and his wife, who were simply seeking to find a decent
place for their family to live near the military base.
The court found that in July 2000, Brosh refused to rent a house to Captain
Dale Van Dyke, his wife Jennifer and their three children, in violation of the
federal Fair Housing Act. The family relocated to Belleville because Van Dyke
had been stationed at Scott Air Force Base. The Scott Air Force Bases Housing
Assistance Office referred Van Dyke to Broshs rental house. When Jennifer Van
Dyke called Mr. Brosh about renting the house, however, he told her he did not
like renting to families with young children. The family was unable to find
another house in the area that was suitable for their family. They were forced
to stay in cramped temporary base housing for several additional days. The
family finally moved into a house in an undesirable neighborhood that lacked
adequate place for their children to play outside.
Van Dyke filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban
Development, which investigated the allegations and issued a charge of
discrimination. The Housing and Civil Enforcement Section of the Justice
Departments Civil Rights Division prosecuted the case.
This is the second case the Justice Department handled this year in which the
victims of discrimination were military families. In January, the Department
entered into a consent decree with Trinidad Maldonado, the owner of the Midway
Mobile Home Park in Junction City, Kansas. The Midway Mobile Home Park houses
a number of military personnel stationed at the nearby Fort Riley Army Base
and their families. The Department alleged in that case that Mr. Maldonado
sexually harassed female tenants of the park, including several women whose
husbands were stationed at Fort Riley. Mr. Maldonado agreed to pay $300,000 to
settle the case.
Anyone who believes that he or she has been discriminated against in housing
should call the Housing and Civil Enforcement Section of the Justice
Departments Civil Rights Division at 1-800-896-7743 or 202-514-3713, or
contact the Department of Housing and Urban Development at 1-800-669-9777.
Additional information about the Housing and Civil Enforcement Section of the
Justice Departments Criminal Division is available on the Justice Department
website at www.usdoj.gov/crt/housing