admission by Mrs. Schmidt, who informed her that the property had
been sold or was not for sale.
Subsequently a white investigator for the Leadership Council
for Metropolitan Open Communities, John Woltjen, went to the
premises and after inquiry was shown through the premises by the
defendant Anna Schmidt and a boarder (also named as a defendant
in this suit, but dismissed by the Court as a defendant at the
conclusion of the plaintiffs' evidence). This investigator was
informed that the property was for sale and at a figure
considerably less than the alleged contract price as maintained
by the defendants Carr and Potocki.*
It is also undisputed that plaintiffs had been investigating
the possibility of home purchase for many months prior to the
events in question and had been dealing primarily with another
employee of Sky Realty, Inc., who testified on behalf of the
defendants. He also testified that he had what is characterized
as a "prospect sheet" furnished by the defendant Sky Realty
Company, Inc., and that it was customarily kept by employees of
that organization for purposes of maintaining potential customer
lists. The customer list dated 6-25-69 listing the Seatons, also
carried the notation C-o-l, which the witness H.M. Lewis stated
meant "colored," and was maintained to establish "rapport."
Other prospect lists maintained by the defendant organization
were also brought into court, although not introduced into
evidence, and by the testimony of H.M. Lewis were demonstrated to
carry various notations indicating the race or national origin of
the prospective purchasers of property. The witness Lewis (in
addition to the rapport above discussed) also indicated these
designations were used by him for purposes of locating geographic
areas of the city that the prospect might be interested in
Ultimately, the plaintiffs filed the instant lawsuit and
subsequent thereto were shown the premises which they proved to
be not in conformance with the advertised appointments and were
unsatisfactory to the plaintiffs. This visit by the plaintiffs to
the premises, incidentally, was prompted by action of the federal
district court on a motion for a preliminary injunction, although
the injunction was not issued.
During the visit of the white investigator (John Woltjen), Mrs.
Schmidt stated that she would "rather go to jail than sell to
Taken in its entirety, the plaintiffs have amply demonstrated
through the evidence and the circumstances involved that Sky
Realty Company, Inc., the defendant Jerry Carr, the defendant Art
Potocki are systematically engaged in violation of both Sections
1982 and 3604, particularly as they relate to these plaintiffs.
The Court has no doubt that the defendant Anna K. Schmidt also
violated these sections by her acts and conversations with the
various witnesses for the plaintiffs.
There remains then only the question of the relief sought by
the plaintiffs. Plaintiffs initially asked for injunctive relief
which is no longer appropriate, since they request only that the
defendants be enjoined from refusing to open negotiations on the
"said home" to plaintiffs. The home has been shown to the
plaintiffs and they have rejected it. Further, the plaintiffs
request that this Court enjoin Sky Realty Company from refusing
to open negotiations or from showing any other home in the area
to the plaintiffs. Plaintiffs have indicated no desire to seek
out other property since they already purchased a home and
presently are residing in Oak Park, Illinois.
The plaintiffs also ask for the granting of actual damages.
Although the record is sparse as to the actual damages suffered,
testimony was introduced that the plaintiff Jerome Seaton
suffered great embarrassment because of the action of the
defendants during his attempt with his wife to visit the property
at 5035 Crystal Avenue, Chicago, Illinois, and further, the
plaintiffs were forced, by
virtue of the wrongful actions of the various defendants, to make
several trips to and from the home site and the offices of the
defendant Sky Realty Co. The Court therefore concludes that
actual damages have been adequately shown and they are therefore
assessed in the amount of $500.00. Judgment in favor of the
plaintiffs and against all of the defendants remaining in the
suit is therefore entered in the amount of $500.00.
The complaint also asks for appropriate exemplary or punitive
damages to be assessed against the various defendants. The
defendant Anna K. Schmidt is a woman of 78 years, apparently
incapacitated and residing in Florida. The Court can see no
purpose to be served by assessing punitive damages against Anna
K. Schmidt and none therefore are assessed against her.
As to the defendants Sky Realty, Inc. and the defendants Art
Potocki and Jerry Carr, both agents of the defendant Sky Realty
Company, ample cause exists for the granting of punitive damages
against them. Accordingly, the Court orders that judgment in the
amount of $1,000.00 be entered in favor of the plaintiffs and
against the defendant Sky Realty Co., Inc. for punitive damages
in this cause. The Court further orders that judgment in the
amount of $1,000.00 be entered against defendant Art Potocki, in
favor of the plaintiffs for punitive damages in this cause. The
Court further orders that judgment in the amount of $1,000.00 be
entered against the defendant Jerry Carr, in favor of the
plaintiffs for punitive damages in this cause.
So there will be no mistake, the punitive damages assessed
against each of the three defendants are not joint and several
liabilities but individual liabilities and individual judgments.
The actual damages of $500.00 represents a joint and several
judgment against Sky Realty Co., Inc., defendant Art Potocki and
defendant Jerry Carr and defendant Anna K. Schmidt.
The plaintiffs are further awarded reasonable costs of these
No evidence having been introduced as to the necessity for, or
the amount of, attorneys fees, none will be assessed at this
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