Exclusive: Mott Haven residents claim landlord is sabotaging their building

Neighbors have filed a police report and the NYPD says that they are investigating the possibly unlawful eviction.

News 12 Staff

Aug 18, 2023, 2:08 AM

Updated 249 days ago

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Residents in Mott Haven say that their landlord is purposefully sabotaging their building to make it uninhabitable, forcing a vacate order.
The residents of 220 East 134th Street cherished their building – it was a commercial building that was converted into residential lofts over 20 years ago, where many of the residents have called home for ages.
“We’re on a dead-end block, separated from a lot of people,” said tenant Raeven Senior. “We have each other, we look out for each other.”
The building was bolted shut on Wednesday, with a vacate order stamped across the door. Tenant Geoff Rawling believes foul play is at fault.
"Everything was wrong with the building, they unfortunately said we have to vacate because for your own safety, you can't be in this building,” said Rawling. “The landlord has been such an animal… it’s insane.”
Rawling says that many residents have been without electricity, hot water, gas, and a sprinkler system for weeks.
A tenant’s Nest camera caught their landlord entering a unit and removing the electricity meter.
“He actually left the building with a meter, with the electric meter in the middle of the night,” said Rawling.
Five Boro Storage Inc. owns the property. News 12 reached out to the owners of the property but were unable to receive a comment.
Rawling and his fellow neighbors have filed a police report and the NYPD says that they are investigating the possibly unlawful eviction. The Department of Buildings is also investigating a case of tenant harassment.
At this time, residents at this property are being provided housing by the Red Cross, as they work together to take back their homes.


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