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Harvey, IL

Harvey, IL: (Sep-11-07) Rick Graves, the son of Harvey's former mayor Nickolas Graves, brought a federal lawsuit against the city, alleging that the city's current administration discriminated against him. Under the reign of former Mayor Nickolas Graves, his son's towing company counted on the city for the bulk of its business under an oral contract with his father. So when Rick Graves' firm, Royal Towing, lost its city business after Mayor Eric Kellogg defeated Nickolas Graves in a nasty 2003 election, Rick Graves sued. The suit stemmed from an unpaid bill from Royal Towing to the city dating to the final year of the Graves regime. Records show that in 2002, Nickolas Graves ordered about 70 cars towed from a decrepit Dixie Highway auto repair shop for reasons that remain unclear. Royal Towing removed the cars and later slapped the city with a $572,000 bill. Graves then sued the city, seeking payment of the bill and contending that he was a victim of unconstitutional retribution for his political support of his father. The lawsuit also lodged claims of racism, noting that Graves, who is white, had his towing firm replaced by a black-owned company shortly after the election of Kellogg, who is black. In a settlement reached, the lawsuit reached its end after the city's administration agreed to a $400,000 payout. [DAILY SOUTH TOWN: TOWING BILL]

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Published on Sep-16-07


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