Federal lawsuit alleges racial discrimination with sale of Zukey Lake house

Rick Beaudin — aka the Pinckney Pirate, and one of Livingston County’s best-known Realtors who was fired from RE/MAX Platinum in June 2020 for a racially insensitive Facebook post — is one of the defendants in a federal lawsuit filed Friday, Jan. 15, 2021, alleging violations of the Fair Housing Act.

Beaudin was fired for posting “Can’t we all just promote in Pinckney that All Lives Matter?” on Facebook during the time a BLM-supporting event was being planned for Pinckney. You can read our story on that firing by clicking here.

Now, Beaudin — along with Mary Kay Ikens, a current RE/MAX Platinum agent; KW Realty; and RE/MAX Platinum — are being sued in Federal Court for allegedly violating the Fair Housing Act when showing a Zukey Lake house to an interracial couple from Ohio.

Beaudin and KW Realty Livingston were the listing agent and office on the house, and Ikens and RE/MAX Platinum were the selling agent and office.

You can read the Jan. 18, 2021, story about the lawsuit in the Detroit News; Beaudin said in the story that he had not seen the suit and wouldn’t comment on it. The Detroit News also left a message for Ikens.

To quickly summarize the suit, the Franklins — an interracial couple — claim in the suit that they were dissuaded from buying the house on Zukey Lake in Hamburg Township, which had been listed for $350,000. After the couple saw the house, they immediately put in a $300,000 offer, indicating it was an opening bid; according to the suit, the couple was told by Ikens that unless they put in a full-price offer and purchased the house as-is, the seller would ignore their offer; the Franklins then withdrew their offer. According to the suit, the couple later learned that the house had been sold for $300,000 — their opening offer — and the deal was done via mortgage, not all cash.

The difference, according to the lawsuit, is that the buyer was a white man, and the Franklins are an interracial couple.

You can read the filing below.

franklin-v-remax-complaint-filed-1-15-21

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The Livingston Post is the only locally owned, all-digital information and opinion site in Livingston County, Mich. It was launched by award-winning journalists who were laid off from the Livingston County Daily Press & Argus by Gannett Co. Inc. in 2009.

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