Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Mt. Prospect Family Claims Racial Harassment, Intimidation

Terry Calliari
822 W Partridge Ln
Mount Prospect, IL 60056

Taken from Chicago Tribune:

A Mount Prospect family has filed a lawsuit alleging that a neighbor repeatedly berated them with racial slurs and harassed and intimidated them because they are African-American. 
The suit by Iris Howe and her two children alleged the harassment began as the family was moving into the town home community in April 2009 when the neighbor shouted the N-word at them. 
The hate-crime lawsuit, filed in Cook County Circuit Court on Monday by the Chicago Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, identified the white neighbor as Terry Calliari. A woman who answered the door at the Partridge Lane address, which displayed St. Patrick’s Day decorations, declined to talk to a Tribune reporter Tuesday evening. 
Howe and her two children live across the street from Calliari’s residence, according to the lawsuit. No one answered at the home Tuesday evening. 
The suit alleged that Calliari intended to drive the family from the neighborhood and had especially targeted Howe’s daughter, Sidney Powell, 19, and son, Samuel Mobley, 16, with racial slurs, verbal intimidation and threats of physical assault over the last five years. The suit said both are students. 
The lawsuit alleged numerous incidents in which Calliari threatened the children with her car, tried to keep them from being able to use the town home association’s community pool and tennis court, and made obscene gestures at virtually every encounter with Mobley. 
According to the lawsuit, Howe has repeatedly reported incidents to the Mount Prospect Police Department, but the police said just one incident had been reported -- and it was by Calliari. 
According to a September 2012 police report, Calliari called police to complain of problems with Howe’s son and alleged he had threatened to harm her grandchildren. The report noted that Calliari’s grandchildren did not appear to be upset at the time police responded to the complaint. 
The Howe family denied making any threat, police said. Howe told police she wanted to file a report about the allegedly ongoing harassment by Calliari, telling police she had used racial slurs and that her vehicle had been vandalized.
Police said claims on both sides could not be substantiated in part because there were no independent witnesses. 
Police offered mediation to both neighbors, and each initially said they would participate, according to the police report. Mount Prospect Police Officer Greg Sill said records do not show that mediation ever took place. According to the lawsuit, Calliari never responded to the mediator’s attempts to reach her. 
William Kraus, one of Howe’s lawyers, declined to comment on the police report.
“This is the approach my client has chosen,” Kraus said of the lawsuit.
The lawsuit alleges that Calliari’s actions caused the Howe family emotional distress as well as pain and suffering and seeks unspecified monetary damages and a permanent injunction barring Calliari from contact with the family. 

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