A federal judge in Connecticut is considering whether to dismiss a lawsuit alleging that a 9-year-old Little League player in Darien was demoted after his father proposed to build affordable housing units in the tony Fairfield County suburb,
the Hartford Courant reports.
Darien resident Christopher Stefanoni argues in the lawsuit that his son was moved from one Little League team to another with younger players in retaliation for Stefanoni's proposed real estate development project, according to the Courant. The 2013 lawsuit names Little League board members, who deny Stefanoni's allegations and recently filed the motion to dismiss the suit.
A town of 21,000, Darien regularly appears on lists of the nation's wealthiest communities, and according to the 2010 census, its population is 94 percent white. Stefanoni alleges in his lawsuit that the town's zoning and planning commission has systematically rejected applications to build affordable housing in order to keep minorities from moving into Darien.
"Darien is a little white enclave, sort of a holdout segregated town," Stefanoni told the Courant. "The attitudes that people in Darien have are very exclusionary, demeaning. When they go after your kids, they've crossed the line."
Stefanoni's claims about Darien blocking affordable housing mirror those of another housing developer, who has also sued the town in federal court, according to the Courant. That lawsuit is also pending.