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Attorney General Griffin Sues Jonesboro Couple Over Sexual Discrimination and Harassment of Female Renters

Griffin: ‘Subjecting women seeking housing for themselves and their families to sexual discrimination and harassment is abhorrent and a violation of state law’

LITTLE ROCK – Attorney General Tim Griffin today issued the following statement announcing his lawsuit against property owners Charles and Judy Warren of Jonesboro for violations of the Arkansas Fair Housing Act related to sexual discrimination and harassment of female renters:

“Preying on women seeking housing for themselves and their families by subjecting them to sexual discrimination and harassment is abhorrent and a violation of state law. My office will pursue all available penalties and damages against the defendants for violating the Arkansas Fair Housing Act.”

The lawsuit, filed in Craighead County Circuit Court, alleges that, since at least 2019, the defendants subjected female tenants at their properties to sexual discrimination and sexual harassment, including:

  • Offering to grant tangible housing benefits, such as reducing rent, to female
  • tenants in exchange for sexual acts;
  • Subjecting female tenants to unwelcome sexual touching, including touching their breasts and buttocks;
  • Subjecting female tenants to indecent exposure, including unwelcome exposure of genitals;
  • Making unwelcome comments and sexual advances to female tenants, including
  • commenting on tenants’ bodies and inviting them to engage in sexual acts;
  • Menacing female tenants by entering their homes without their permission and
  • with no apparent legitimate reason; and,
  • Taking adverse housing actions, or threatening to do so, against female tenants who objected to or refused sexual advances.

Griffin is seeking injunctive and declaratory relief, and compensatory and punitive damages through a jury trial, including monetary damages for victims and civil penalties.

For a copy of the lawsuit, click here.

For a printer-friendly version of this release, click here.

About Attorney General Tim Griffin

Tim Griffin was sworn in as the 57th Attorney General of Arkansas on January 10, 2023, having
previously served as the state’s 20th Lieutenant Governor from 2015-2023. From 2011-2015, Griffin served as the 24th representative of Arkansas’s Second Congressional District, where he served on the House Committee on Ways and Means, House Armed Services Committee, House Committee on Foreign Affairs, House Committee on Ethics and House Committee on the Judiciary while also serving as a Deputy Whip for the Majority.

Griffin has served as an officer in the U.S. Army Reserve Judge Advocate General’s (JAG) Corps for more than 28 years and currently holds the rank of colonel. In 2005, Griffin was mobilized to active duty as an Army prosecutor at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, and served with the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) in Mosul, Iraq.

He is currently serving as the Commander of the 2d Legal Operations Detachment in New Orleans, Louisiana. His previous assignments include serving as the Commander of the 134th Legal Operations Detachment at Fort Liberty (née Bragg), North Carolina, and as a Senior Legislative Advisor to the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness at the Pentagon. Griffin earned a master’s degree in strategic studies as a Distinguished Honor Graduate from the U.S. Army War College, Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania.

Griffin also served as U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas, and Special Assistant to the President and Deputy Director of Political Affairs for President George W. Bush; Special Assistant to Assistant Attorney General Michael Chertoff, Criminal Division, U.S. Department of Justice; Special Assistant U.S. Attorney, U.S. Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of Arkansas; Senior Investigative Counsel, Government Reform and Oversight Committee, U.S. House of Representatives; and Associate Independent Counsel, Office of Independent Counsel David M. Barrett, In re: HUD Secretary Henry Cisneros.

Griffin is a graduate of Magnolia High School, Hendrix College in Conway, and Tulane Law School in New Orleans. He attended graduate school at Oxford University. He is admitted to practice law in Arkansas (active) and Louisiana (inactive). Griffin lives in Little Rock with his wife, Elizabeth, a Camden native, and their three children.