Slumlord Ordered To Live In Own Building Until Repairs Are Made

Stealing a page from “The Super” screenplay, an Ohio judge ordered a landlord to live in one of his decrepit buildings until repairs are made.

Lakewood Municipal Judge Patrick Carroll ordered Richard Naumann to live in his Lake Avenue apartment building — which has no heat, hot water, operable stoves or ovens…

Naumann, who will only be allowed to leave the building between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. for work, will also be outfitted with an electronic monitoring device on his ankle to ensure he abides by the judge’s command…

All rent money collected by Naumann must also be turned over to the city of Lakewood beginning June 1 so that residents and the gas company can petition for reimbursement.

Naumann allegedly owes nearly $114,000 to gas company Dominion East Ohio but court records show service would be restored if a payment of $22,300 was made…

Goes to show that taking a case to court can sometimes bring about sweet, comic, justice. — BEN POPKEN

Landlord forced to live in own building [UPI] (Thanks to Danilo!)

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  1. gwong says:

    Goes to show that taking a case to court can sometimes bring about sweet, comic, justice.

    As well as karmic justice.

  2. Hoss says:

    If it was me — no way would it be enforceable. Good luck judge

  3. @Hossofcourse: Why not?

  4. foghat81 says:

    News article is certainly funnier than the movie :)

  5. I really love this kind of creative sentencing. We need more of it.

  6. cde says:

    @Hossofcourse: It’s a form of house arrest and a midway house. The other option is jail. I’m sure the guy agreed to it.

  7. Beerad says:

    Yeah, almost all of these “creative sentencing” cases are where the defendant is given the option of jail time or the alternative punishment. The law isn’t really set up to mete out public shaming/punishment-in-kind type arrangements, but unsurprisingly people will accept almost anything to stay out of prison.

  8. Buran says:

    Why don’t people just move out due to breach of contract? They’re paying for utilities they are not getting. Also, why are the innocent being cut off? They’re paying …

  9. bambino says:

    @Rectilinear Propagation: Because he’s a hoss of course! Or just a jerk who thinks he’s above the law…

  10. timmus says:

    Holy cow… he owes $114 thousand to the gas company? Maybe he should have had meters going to individual apartments like 30 years ago?

  11. MikeB says:

    @Buran: Most likely, the people that live in a slum can not afford to move.

  12. CumaeanSibyl says:

    @mbouchard: Also, I bet this makes things a lot easier when you’re strapped for cash. “Gee, sorry I can’t pay the rent this month, I guess we can just take it to THE CITY and see what they decide… oh, you mean I can pay it when I have the money? Thanks a bunch.”

  13. Libelous1 says:

    Why are landlords the ones forced to subsidize people who can’t afford decent housing? The landlord will not be able to raise rents to recover the added investment, or if he does, then the tenants complaining will all have to move out for inability to pay. I’ll bet some sort of price control is in effect.

    If I were the landlord, I would just level the building, put in decent property, and raise rents to market rates that would justify the investment. That’s typically what happens, and there’s not much the court could do about that.

    Also, I have a hard time believing that the judgment is enforceable — essentially a house arrest, unless he’s already in contempt of a prior order (which is quite possible) or if his failures are criminal in nature.

  14. cde says:

    @Libelous1: Congrats. You just told everyone the plot of “The Super”

  15. North of 49 says:

    where’s trembecki.com when you need it?

  16. SexCpotatoes says:

    “Why are landlords the ones forced to subsidize people who can’t afford decent housing?”

    I think you missed the “slum-lord” designation… There are some “landlords” who fail to keep a property in good repair, evade taxes, refuse to handle complaints/fix issues. And you, Libelous1, are defending the slum-lord, classic.

  17. iMike says:

    The black dude in that movie poster looks like a buff Erkel.

  18. wuzandfuz says:

    Actually, Libelous1 has a decent point. My girlfriend was engaging in a discussion of slumlords in some criminal law class, and a lot of the students posited that these slum lord behaviors (not providing utlities, not repairing property, etc) should become criminal in aggregate. The professor said one major reason why courts and legislators have not done this is because it would imply that one cannot charge less for significantly lamer service.

    In addition, if the landlord were to improve service, it would cost him to fix his building, forcing him to raise rent. In the end, this would cost the residents more than they could afford for housing, making them homeless.

  19. adriftinthecorporatesea says:

    @timmus: NOBODY in lakewood/cleveland (i live here, i know, point blank, ever..) pays for gas… it is always up to the complex. I lived in CA for 3 years and i know the difference. In west cleveland (which includes lakewood) renters rule! the best perks get the best tennants and that is why nobody pays for gas, which with the winters we have is quite a perk, and alot of people get free internet now too. Alot of places now are offering free internet too. ahh cleveland… i’ll never leave again

  20. SmartCookie says:

    Uh, actually…I used to live in Lakewood and I DID pay for my own gas. But I think that was because my unit had its own furnace. I lived in the Highland House apartments on Lake Avenue.

  21. mrbenning says:

    The house I rented in Lakewood for the last three years required me to pay for gas. And gas prices were ridiculous. Unless you’re just talking about apartment complexes, in which case, I have no idea.

  22. dlayphoto says:

    More discussion here.

    I live in Lakewood, and I pay for gas…Dominion sucks. Lakewood is a renter’s town (it’s the most densely-populated city between New York and Chicago), which means it has more than its fair share of slumlords.