JD Howlette Law Files Federal Civil Rights Lawsuit Against The City Of Mt. Rainier And Prince George’s County

By JD Howlette Law

PRINCE GEORGE’S COUNTY, Maryland, December 12, 2023 – JD Howlette Law, a firm committed to championing civil rights and individual liberties, today announced the filing of a federal civil rights lawsuit against The City of Mt. Rainier, Prince George’s County, and individual defendants Alma Ferrufino, Ukkundo'Oohwaka, and Darrell Terry. The lawsuit, filed on behalf of Patricia McLamb, alleges severe violations of Ms. McLamb’s constitutional rights, including those protected under the Fourteenth and Fifth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution, as well as several Maryland state laws.

Patricia McLamb, a Hispanic mother residing in Montgomery County, Maryland, faced egregious and hostile code enforcement actions resulting in the destruction of her residence and financial losses exceeding $700,000. The Complaint details a series of events following Ms. McLamb's acquisition of property in Mount Rainier, Maryland, which she intended to remodel to accommodate her disabled daughter. Despite possessing all necessary permits and approvals for construction and demolition work, Ms. McLamb was subjected to frivolous stop work orders, false accusations of unpermitted work, and other unjust administrative obstacles by the local code enforcement defendants. 

The Complaint also asserts a troubling RICO claim against one of the defendants for allegedly soliciting sexual favors from Ms. Lamb in exchange for fixing her code enforcement issues. Under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization (RICO) Act, a person can be held criminally and civilly liable for committing at least two acts of racketeering (i.e., a specific set of federal and state crimes) within a 10-year period.

The treatment of Ms. McLamb by The City of Mt. Rainier and Prince George’s County is not only deeply unjust but also a clear violation of her constitutional rights, says Attorney Jordan D. Howlette, who represents Ms. McLamb in the lawsuit. “This case is a distressing example of how unchecked administrative power can devastate individuals and their families. We stand firmly with Ms. McLamb in seeking justice and accountability.

The Complaint alleges that the defendants' actions culminated in the constructive seizure of Ms. McLamb’s property without fair compensation and arbitrarily barred her from proceeding with the remodeling work that had been approved and permitted by both The City of Mt. Rainier and Prince George's County Department of Permitting, Inspection and Enforcement (DPIE), causing Ms. McLamb to suffer significant emotional and financial harm. Ms. McLamb seeks compensatory and punitive damages, as well as injunctive relief against the defendants. 

The case is Patricia McLamb v. The City of Mt. Rainier, et al. (Case No. 8:23-cv-03365-DKC), filed in the United States District Court for the District of Maryland.