US court says Housing Act

covers harassed LGBT tenant

CHICAGO (AP) — A federal appeals court found that the U.S. Fair Housing Act places obligations on landlords to protect LGBT tenants from harassment by other tenants.

The new ruling by the Chicago-based 7th U.S. Court of Appeals, posted late Monday, sides with 70-year-old Marsha Wetzel. She accused a suburban Chicago senior living center of doing nothing to stop other residents from hurling homophobic slurs at her, spitting on her and even striking her because of her sexual orientation.

The unanimous, 20-page ruling by the three-judge panel reverses a lower-court judge who tossed Wetzel’s lawsuit against the Glen Saint Andrew Living Community in Niles.

“Not only does (the Fair Housing Act) create liability when a landlord intentionally discriminates against a tenant based on a protected characteristic,” the ruling said, “it also creates liability against a landlord that has actual notice of tenant-on-tenant harassment … yet chooses not to take any reasonable steps within its control to stop that harassment.”

Lawyers for Wetzel heralded the decision.

Cases in which police officers were charged in shootings

DALLAS (AP) — A white former police officer has been convicted of murder in Texas for fatally shooting a black, unarmed teenager while on duty. The shooting launched the Dallas suburb of Balch Springs into a national conversation on issues of law enforcement and race.

Here are details about that case and others in recent years in which charges were filed in police shootings of black people:

— Dallas: Roy Oliver was convicted of murder Tuesday in the 2017 death of 15-year-old Jordan Edwards. Oliver, a Balch Springs police officer at the time, fired into a car packed with black teenagers who were leaving a house party in the Dallas suburb. The gunfire killed Edwards. Oliver said he thought his partner was in danger as the car drove by. But his partner told jurors he didn’t fear for his life.

— East Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania: Officer Michael Rosfeld was charged in the June 19 shooting death of 17-year-old Antwon Rose Jr. after the teen fled from a traffic stop. He is scheduled to be in court for a pretrial hearing Sept. 11.