IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF THE THIRTEENTH JUDICIAL CIRCUIT, IN AND FOR HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, FLORIDA CIVIL DIVISION ERIC

BROWN and HAROLD LAWRENCE, Plaintiffs, v. STACY DAVID, INC. d/b/a BRANDON HYUNDAI, Defendant. ____________________________________/ PLAINTIFF’S RESPONSE IN OPPOSITION TO DEFENDANT’S MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT Plaintiffs, ERIC BROWN and HAROLD LAWRENCE, by and through undersigned counsel, hereby file their response in opposition to Defendant’s Motion for Summary Judgment and ask the Court to deny Defendant’s Motion and immediately set this case for trial. In support thereof, Plaintiff’s state the following. BACKGROUND Plaintiffs, Eric Brown and Harold Lawrence are African American males who are employed by Verizon. On or about July 22, 2009, they decided to visit Brandon Hyundai that is owned by Defendant Stacy David, Inc. Specifically, Plaintiffs were interested in looking at the Hyundai Genesis. After looking at the cars on the lot, Plaintiffs spent some time talking to a sales person. Plaintiff Lawrence offered his driver’s licenses to the sales person and he went to get the keys to the car. Upon the sales person’s return, he told Plaintiffs that his sales manager would not let them test drive the car until Defendant’s ran Case No. 09-CA-026297 Division: K

Like Plaintiffs. 42 U. On or about Saturday. Iantosca went to Defendant’s dealership. The salesman indicated that he had to check with his manager. Plaintiffs are seeking relief under the Civil Rights Act of 1866. The Plaintiffs can establish a prima facie case of discrimination based on the facts in the record. August 22. Defendant allowed Iantosca to test drive the vehicle without running a credit check. Plaintiffs asked the salesman if they may test drive the vehicle. Plaintiffs filed the instant action in this Court. Plaintiffs questioned the logic in Defendant’s policy and left the dealership. as amended. Plaintiffs visited Defendant’s automobile dealership to consider making a purchase on a Hyundai Genesis. George Iantosca.S. After meeting Defendant’s salesman. Plaintiffs Brown and Lawrence are able to satisfy their burden of showing that Defendant treated them differently based on race. The sales person told Plaintiffs that this was Defendant’s policy. Recognizing the subtle discrimination connected to Defendant’s policy. Unlike 2 . When the salesman returned. A. 2009. Plaintiffs asked a Caucasian friend. Given the discriminatory nature of Defendant’s treatment. Plaintiffs shared their story with George Iantosca. like the Plaintiffs.C. Instead of dressing in business casual. a Caucasian friend. Iantosca was wearing shorts when he visited the dealership. Specifically. Of course. § 1981. he told Plaintiffs that they could test drive the vehicle if they submitted to a credit check. Iantosca asked a salesman if he could test drive the car. Plaintiffs were not happy with this treatment and they left the dealership without test driving the Hyundai Genesis. On his visit to the dealership. Iantosca asked to test drive the Hyundai Genesis.a credit report on Plaintiffs. to visit the dealership.

There is no dispute that Defendants subjected Plaintiffs. Inc. the salesman did not ask Iantosca to submit to a credit check.C. Because Plaintiffs left Defendant’s dealership without test driving a vehicle or making a purchase. In summary judgment. On that basis alone.3d 1228 (11th Cir. 211 F..S. and 3) the discrimination concerned one or mare activities enumerated in the statute. in the present case subjected Plaintiffs. Defendant’s cannot prevail on summary judgment. 2) the defendant had an intent to discriminate on the basis of race. for the plaintiff must show that the defendant employed a practice that treats races differently. to a different standard to a similarly situated Caucasian consumer. the Plaintiffs have successfully established the prima facie requirements for discrimination. B. § 1981. to a standard different than Iantosca a Caucasian man.the Plaintiffs. In cases such as the present case. 2000). Notwithstanding. The appellate court further noted that the plaintiff must bring forth evidence demonstrating that the defendant treated him less favorably because of his race or ethnicity. this argument. There is no dispute that Defendant. In other words. Avis Rent-A-Car Systems. the Eleventh Circuit has ruled that a plaintiff must establish that: 1) he is a member of a racial minority. Because Defendant subjected Plaintiff to a different standard. Defendant’s Motion for Summary Judgment should be denied because its argument attempts to narrow the reading of 42 U. Defendant argues that Plaintiffs have failed to allege discrimination 3 . two African-American men. Plaintiffs will address the flaws in Defendant’s argument in part B below. Defendant has not advanced a legitimate business reason for treating Plaintiff’s differently than the similarly situated Caucasian consumer. Rutstein v.

A plaintiff can show that he is attempting to make a contract when he has demonstrated an interest in specific items that a defendant has held out for sale. Office Max.. Defendant used one standard for Plaintiffs.3d 94. Plaintiffs have satisfied the requirements set forth above. Inc. Dillard’s. Moreover. The Eighth Circuit further observed that section 1981 reaches beyond the four corners of a contract into the contracting process. Inc. (citing Morris v. Discrimination is established when similarly situated individuals are treated differently. Inc. Id. 302. Plaintiffs entered into the third phase of the contractual 4 .3d 533 (8th Cir.S.3d 743. 511 U. of contracts” and the language of section 1981 is itself very broad.S. 456 F. 2002)). For example the U. 1510 (1994)). 100 (1st Cir. (citing Denny v. Inc. federal courts have addressed arguments very similar to Defendant’s argument and noted that section 1981 should not be read that narrowly. Defendant’s argument is flawed because it ignores the damage caused by discriminatory behavior. and a completely different and less burdensome standard for the Caucasian comparator. Id. 277 F. 295 F. two AfricanAmerican gentlemen. Elizabeth Arden Salons. As noted above in part A..Ct. (citing Garrett v. By arriving at the dealership they demonstrated an interest in the vehicles that Defendant held out for sale. 2006)). 298. The court added “the making . Roadway Express.. 752 (5th Cir. Courts of Appeal for the Eighth Circuit recognized that section 1981’s protections extend to all phases and incidents of the contractual relationship.3d 427. 483 F. . . 114 S.under section 1981. 2001)).. Tandy Corp. Id.. As Plaintiffs approached the Hyundai Genesis they entered into another step or phase of the contractual relationship. 437 (4th Cir. 2007)(citing Rivers v. Green v.

Simply put. Plaintiffs have successfully demonstrated that Defendant subjected them to discriminatory treatment. Because Defendant threw up this artificial barrier Plaintiffs took offense and left the dealership. the Court should enter an Order denying Defendant’s Motion for Summary Judgment and further granting Plaintiff’s Motion to Set Case for Trial and placing this case on the Court’s January trial term. Ferguson. Defendant’s Motion for Summary Judgment should be denied. 163 U. 2011. It was at that point that Defendant threw an artificial barrier or hurdle in the contract relationship by requiring Plaintiffs to submit to a credit check prior to test driving the vehicle. Plaintiffs must run through a gauntlet of offensive treatment before they can present their claim to a jury. we do not live in Defendant’s world as this would require us to breathe new life into Plessy v. Defendant wants to cry foul because Plaintiffs did not enter a contract. This was not a requirement that Defendant’s set for their Caucasian customers. 537 (1896)(anachronistic decision upholding the constitutionality of state laws requiring racial segregation in private businesses). At this stage. 5 . discrimination involves unequal treatment on the basis of race. Accordingly.relationship when they asked to test drive the vehicle.S. Defendant should not escape summary judgment simply because Plaintiffs refused to dismiss Defendant’s offensive conduct and left the dealership. Dated this 6th day of December. WHEREFORE. for all of the foregoing reasons. Defendant’s argument begs the question how much abuse must Plaintiffs endure to have a viable claim of discrimination. Fortunately. In Defendant’s world. In Defendant’s world to insult Plaintiffs simply because they are African Americans is not enough.

FL 33602 _________________________________ Attorney 6 . 196 Brandon. P. Ford & Harrison LLP 101 E.A.: 0068497 BRADFORD AND BRADFORD. Kennedy Blvd. Suite 900 Tampa. Ste. Esq.Respectfully Submitted. 150 East Bloomingdale Ave.. Hall. FL 33511 Telephone: (813) 413-2402 Facsimile: (813) 413-2425 e-mail: rich@bradfordfirm. _________________________________ RICHARD L. Mail on this 6th day of December 2011 to: Bradley R.S.com Attorney for Plaintiff CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE I HEREBY CERTIFY that a true and correct copy of the foregoing has been furnished via U. BRADFORD Florida Bar No.

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