The Chicago Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law filed a hate crime lawsuit in Cook County Circuit Court on behalf of Iris Howe and her family against their neighbor, Terry Calliari.
Iris Howe, who is African-American, alleges that Calliari, who is white, has perpetrated a continuing pattern of racially motivated intimidation and harassment against the Howe family for the more than four years that both parties have lived on the 800 block of West Partridge Lane in northwest suburban Mount Prospect.
According to the lawsuit, Calliari has harassed Howe, her daughter, Sidney Powell, and son, Samuel Mobley, since the day the Howe family moved into their home in April 2009. Specifically, the suit alleges that Calliari has repeatedly referred to Howe family members using the the N-word and other racial slurs; followed the Howe children around the neighborhood in her car, often coming within inches of them; attempted to instigate physical altercations with the Howe children; and on at least one occasion told the family to leave the neighborhood.
The suit further alleges that Calliari’s malicious actions have caused the Howe family emotional distress, pain, and suffering and seeks a permanent injunction barring Calliari from contact with the family as well as punitive and compensatory damages for emotional distress and loss of civil rights.
“Our goal is to secure compensation for the denial of the Howe family’s rights and for the extreme emotional distress they have been forced to endure,” said Baum, Director of Pro Bono Services at Katten. “We hope that by bringing this suit, justice will be served, and others will be deterred from engaging in this type of racist and abusive conduct.”
Chicago Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Fair Housing Project Director Betsy Shuman-Moore stated, “We are pleased to continue our partnership with Katten in the very important work of fighting hate crimes and housing discrimination.”
Click here to read the full press release.