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Real Estate & Property Law

Landlords Charged in Calif. Rental Rage Case Cut Hole in Tenant’s Floor

Posted Apr 24, 2008 3:02 PM CDT
By Martha Neil

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Two landlords are facing felony charges after allegedly waging a war of terror in an effort to persuade a San Francisco tenant to move out and harassing two other tenants who sought to pay reduced rent.

Software engineer Kip Macy, 33, and real estate agent Nicole Macy, 32, were charged with felony stalking, felony residential burglary, conspiracy and other counts, in what the San Francisco Chronicle describes as a "bizarre case of apparent landlord rage."

After tenant Scott Morrow prevailed in court in an eviction case against the Macys, the two reportedly had workers cut the beams supporting the floor of his apartment, open a hole in the floor of his living room, and shut off his electric and phone service, the newspaper writes. He is now reportedly afraid to leave his apartment, for fear that the landlords will change the locks.

Cutting the floor joists to Morrow's apartment "is one of the most egregious things I've seen, of cases of landlords really going to extremes," says Jennifer Choi, a deputy city attorney involved in a related case against the couple.

The Macys apparently acted out of an extraordinary sense of self-entitlement that they could do whatever they wished to their own property, says J. Scott Weaver, a lawyer representing Morrow.

"It makes you question your own sanity," Weaver says. "You think, why would a landlord do that? Why would a landlord cut open his floor? It was a big hole. ... After a few incidents like that, you come to the conclusion that anything can happen."

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