The case arose out of a rental agreement Donahue Francis signed with Kings Park Manor in 2010. Shortly after moving in, the complaint alleges, a neighbor named Raymond Endres began to subject him to racial harassment and abuse. This discriminatory conduct, which included repeated use of the N-word and at least one death threat, ultimately led to Endres being charged with, and pleading guilty to, a state hate crime. Francis alleges that, although both he and the police repeatedly told building management of this conduct, management did nothing other than advise him to continue calling the police. As a result, Francis feared for his safety for the several months of Endres's campaign, and experienced significant emotional distress until Endres left Kings Park Manor in January 2013.
Relman, Dane & Colfax filed suit on behalf of Francis in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York against Endres, Kings Park Manor, and property manager Corrine Downing. The district court entered a default judgment against Endres, but it dismissed Francis's other claims, reasoning that a landlord has no duty to act.
The case is currently on appeal.
Francis v. Kings Park Manor, Inc., No. 14-cv-3555 (E.D.N.Y.)