Ferguson, Missouri vs Racine, Wisconsin 2

Posted: August 31, 2015 in The Film

Ferguson-Logo[1]                                   thG9RVCQHT


February 24,2015

Mayor Dickert and other city officials who have been sued are now saying they never said those words. They say they never typed the words — and they say they can prove it.

“Let’s be clear — what they did as I understand it, they were going to do a search for certain words,” Mayor Dickert said.

“To date, according to our attorneys, they have found nothing relevant to those words being utilized in any of the documentation,” Mayor Dickert said.


Racine mayor calls lawsuit accusing him of targeting minority business owners ‘reprehensible’

“The allegations I heard today were not only ugly and vicious but false and insulting,” Dickert told 620 WTMJ.

Dickert explained that he has proof that slurs were not used  February 19, 2015



None of that surprises me. I told them that’s what they would find,” Vince Bobot said.

Bobot was one of the first lawyers to get involved in this case. His clients are African-American men who came to him for help. They claimed the city of Racine was going after their business licenses illegally.

“I know a lot of people don’t believe it happened — but it did,” Bobot said. by ,,   February 19, 2015 WITI

The mayor is calling this a cheap political trick with no basis what so ever, but the attorney’s involved said playing politics has nothing to do with it.   February 19,2015 CBS Channel 58

August 26,2015          from Holmes vs City of Racine

There were other e-mails that showed “racial or ethnic bias, as well as other forms of bias,”  “Holmes vs City of Racine” but only these were included. There are 350 additional emails yet to be released. There was not  any suggestion that anyone involved in these e-mails were disciplined, nor were the e-mails reported or the people who sent them asked to stop. “

a. E-mail from Michelle Logan—an African-American employee of the City—to Greg Bach referencing the City as “Raysheen.”  (Stuart Decl., ¶19, Ex. DDDDDD at 12).

b. Devin Sutherland’s (“Sutherland”) e-mail stating that non-white establishments on 6th Street had “not added any value to the neighborhood.”  (Id. at 6).

c. Sutherland’s e-mail stating that “[t]he letter was to make sure the Mayor and others were aware of the current situation on Sixth Street and urge them to step up their assistance.”  (Id. at 26).

d. Testimony of non-City employee Richard Pramer at Ginger’s due process hearing that Ginger’s attracted “hip hop gang banging types.”  (Id. at 17).

e. E-mail from non-City employee Dr. Shove to Chief Howell raising concerns about a country western bar being located near a hip hop bar.  (Id. at 18).

f. Testimony from Chief Howell about the Nuisance Property Abatement Vehicle.  (Id. at 25).   g. Testimony by Chief Howell regarding the Tavern Task Force group.  (Id. at 23).

h. Deposition testimony from Penny Sharp that Mayor Dickert said “These niggers need to go back to Waukegan because they are disturbing the revenue here in Racine from the lake, from our vacationers at the lake.”  (Id. at 19-20).

Case 2:14-cv-00208-JPS   Filed 08/26/15   Page 59 of 68   Document 176



i. Mayor Dickert’s statement that 6th Street needed to be “cleaned up.”  (Id. at 2-3).

j. Mayor Dickert’s statements thanking the Licensing Committee for “[w]orking very, very diligently on making sure 6th Street is a great place for people to live, shop, work and play.”  (Id. at 20).

k. Wahlen’s e-mail to Officer Robert Purdy in which he refers to him as “Mumbai Bob” and asks “[a]re you now wearing one of those towels on your head?”  (Id. at 21).

l. Wahlen’s deposition testimony that, “[b]ut, I’ll say this, no establishment ever comes before the Licensing Committee and says we’re going to play hip-hop music.  That’s not how they get their license.”  (Id. at 17).

m. Wahlen’s deposition testimony that “I’m sure there were accusations of racial profiling that came into play when I was Chief.”  (Id. at 19).

n. Becker’s deposition testimony in which he said that “I would guess that most likely there are” racist people in Racine, that he stated that racism was a problem in Racine “to some degree, yes,” that “Well of course there’s still racism in the world.  There is today and there will probably be tomorrow” and “there are racist people in Racine.”  (Id. at 18-19).

o. Alleged conversation between Coe and Holmes about incidents of minors being in Holmes’ teen club, Chocolate City, after curfew, during which Coe allegedly stated that white “business owners were afraid” of being around blacks in downtown Racine and that “The white people are afraid because there’s black kids in the area.”  (Id. at 15-16).

p. Alleged statements by Coe to Khampane in which he referred to Ginger’s customers as “our crowd.”  (Id. at 16).

q. E-mail from RPD officer David Smetana to Wahlen and City Administrator Friedel stating that a woman in Racine “uses the word ‘nigger’ often and can be heard yelling it by the neighbors.”  (Id. at 19).

r. E-mail from RPD officer David Smetana to RPD Lieutenant Macemon regarding Park 6 stating “[w]e will go ahead with the plan as we spoke of this morning including the nuisance property complaint and going after his cabaret license . . . Plan on proactive foot beats down there for the foreseeable future.”  (Id. at 26).

Case 2:14-cv-00208-JPS   Filed 08/26/15   Page 60 of 68   Document 176 61

1557134.1  s. E-mail from RPD officer David Smetana to Officer Wetzel stating “You may wish to check Park 6 and 2nd Time Around if Gingers is a bust.  Happy Hunting, let me know how it goes.”  (Id. at 28).

t. E-mail from RPD Lieutenant Macemon regarding The Place on 6th stating “[w]e will see if we can take it to the next level and do some DC arrests or tickets when appropriate.”  (Id. at 26).

u. E-mail from RPD Sargent Dave Wohlgemuth stating “I can see that The Place on Sixth is probably not a causal factor in this assault, however I know from prior experience, that the committee may ask me about this call (how they end up hearing about these things, I have no idea, but they do.” (Id. at 27).

v. E-mail from RPD officer Rick Geller stating “Alderperson Coe was present both nights and while happy with our efforts, has placed a target on Ginger’s as a result of the last few weekends.”  (Id. at 28).

w. E-mail from Wisneski to Helding with the subject line, “call a spade a spade.”  (Id. at 22).

x. E-mail from Helding stating that the City was “turning into a Detroit.”  (Id. at 30).

y. E-mail from Wisneski containing the following joke:  “[a] black guy, an illegal alien, a Muslim and a communist walk into a bar.  The bartender asks ‘What can I get you Mr. President?’”  (Id. at 21).

z. Deposition testimony from Cerafin Davalos about Kaplan’s alleged comments to him about the bar Davalos was opening, and asking him “if it was going to be a Mexican bar . . . Kaplan, he said it like in a funny way like having fun, like making fun of me . . . I think because of the Mexican name.”  (Id. at 21).

aa. E-mail from Helding to Maack in which he stated “Being an official, I feel like I have to restrain on Facebook.  Here is my comment on the Gnome.  ‘They combine ghetto and trailer trash in a way that hasn’t been seen since Eminem.’”  (Id. at 21).

bb. E-mail from Wisneski to his mother concerning a bedspread for his son, stating “We will make sure that your grandson gets a nice warm bead (sic) spread.  The one he has now looks totally ghetto.”  (Id. at 21).

cc. E-mail from Wisneski stating “I have seen 2 Marcus signs, both in ghetto neighborhoods . . . .”  (Id. at 22).

  1. Hugo Koch says:

    The fucking niggers have ruined Racine.

  2. Ken Yorgan says:

    While these emails are objectionable, they don’t really allow a casual observer to appreciate the complete context of what happened to the people bringing the lawsuit. They are real people who were engaged in legitimate enterprise who were targeted to be run out of downtown through a joint effort by city officials, the police and even the local newspaper. When anyone takes an unbiased look at the factual history, they will see that these “nuisance” establishments were in fact less of a nuisance than other establishments that were left alone. And the difference between them falls exactly on the color line. It’s a difficult thing for most observers to accept. Most would prefer to remember when Racine was a way station on the underground railroad, the secret trail that allowed runaway slaves in Civil War days to escape to freedom. My, how times change. Thanks for your efforts in bringing this story to light. Hopefully, more people will someday see and understand how wrong it is for some citizens to be treated so differently and unfairly.

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