A lawyer says she has been harassed and bullied for the last few years by her landlord, who repeatedly threatened to evict her because she was a lesbian.
The lawyer, Jenna Ellis, has filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, which is investigating the alleged discrimination.
The EEOC’s office said it received a complaint in March from the lawyer and her roommate, both lesbian, who allege their landlord, James R. Hilliard, threatened to move out of the apartment complex if they came out to their families or friends.
The attorney’s complaint says the landlord also told the roommate he would evict her if she went to the police about her partner’s harassment, and that the roommate also filed a discrimination complaint against Hilliard with the police.
The lawsuit says the lawyer filed a hate crime report with the EEOC after being targeted online and by a landlord who threatened to harass her if the lawyer showed up at his home to visit.
The case is not a hate-crime, and the EEOS’ office says it’s investigating the case as a discrimination claim.
The agency said it has received several reports of harassment in recent months from tenants.
The office said the lawyer was “outraged” when she was denied a rental agreement at a different apartment complex, and was also concerned about Hilliard’s harassment of her partner.
The landlord has not yet been arrested or charged with a crime.
In a statement, Hilliard told NBC News, “I feel I have done nothing wrong.
I have a loving, caring and devoted husband and a loving daughter.”
The lawyer told NBC’s Matt Lauer that she felt she was “disrespected” and “laughed at” by her former landlord.
Hillard has since filed for a restraining order against the landlord, and he has asked the court to deny her request for a rent reduction.
“It’s really unfortunate,” said Ellis.
“I was really afraid that the tenant would have gone to the cops.
She doesn’t have a criminal record, and we have a protective order.
It’s very upsetting.”