Smith v. Wilson

Federal 7th Circuit Court
Civil Court
Race Discrimination
Case Number: 
No. 11-2496
Decision Date: 
January 23, 2013
Federal District: 
W.D. Wisc.
Record contained sufficient evidence to support jury’s verdict in Title VI, as well as section 1981 and 1983 claims alleging that defendant-police chief refused to add plaintiff to City’s preferred list of companies providing towing services on account of his race. While jury found that race was “a” motivating factor based on evidence that police chief frequently used racial slurs when speaking about plaintiff and other African-Americans, jury could also properly find that defendant would not have added plaintiff’s towing services to list even if race played no role in defendant’s actions where: (1) defendant did not add any towing service, including prospective towing service owned by white individual, during relevant time period; and (2) defendant was aware of report that plaintiff had overcharged his customers. Fact that jury found that race played “a” motivating factor in plaintiff’s non-selection did not automatically entitle plaintiff to some form of relief.