Tenants of 'worst landlord in NYC' demand ownership of Washington Heights buildings

Tenants of two buildings owned by New York City's "worst landlord" rallied against "deplorable living conditions" on Monday in the fight to own their apartments.

Their landlord, Daniel Ohebshalom, was sentenced to jail time over repeated housing violations.

Tenants at 705 and 709 West 170th Street in Washington Heights rallied with local housing advocates and elected officials. They said they have a right to own the apartments they live in so they can finally get the repairs they need. Many tenants have been living in their apartment buildings for decades.

Ohebshalom has also, for years, reportedly ignored residents' complaints about roach and rat infestations, lead, mold, leaks, collapsing ceilings, no heat and a plethora of other problems. 

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Tenants spoke out now because, in a couple of weeks, city officials will do inspections to decide their fate. 

"We the tenants know what we want for these buildings. We want these buildings out of the hands of Mr. Ohebshalom and convert it into co-ops. Affordable co-ops so we can live without the fear of another slumlord taking over these buildings," a tenant said. 

Who is Daniel Ohebshalom?

Daniel Ohebshalom has landed on the city's worst landlords list two years in a row. 

Ohebshalom also known as Johnathan Santana (legally), was ordered to fix ongoing hazards at two of his Manhattan buildings for years but refused to do so. 

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He owns the buildings at 705 and 709 West 170th Street in Washington Heights, and between the two buildings, he has racked up nearly 700 violations with the city for not making court-ordered repairs to the buildings’ 42 apartments and/or showing up to court since 2021.

RELATED: 'Worst landlord in NYC': Warrant issued for arrest of Daniel Ohebshalom

Since topping the list, Ohebshalom turned himself in to begin a 60-day jail sentence after being found in contempt of court, for blowing off officials' orders for years.

Prior to his arrest, Ohebshalom hadn't shown up to court since 2021.

Ohebshalom faces a $3 million penalty for the thousands of building violations he's been issued over the years, including a $1.1 million settlement he paid to the city at the end of last year for violations in one of his Hell's Kitchen buildings.