New York's Cooperative and Condominium Community

Habitat Magazine Insider Guide


161 W. 61ST STREET

The fallout continues from the September 2012 rape at The Alfred Condominium, where a 16-year-old pizza deliverer spent 22 minutes wandering hallways and attacking Kia Graves before leaving the building unimpeded.

An attorney for Graves — who is suing the condominium as well as Halstead Management, doorman Luis Rodriguez, rapist Cesar Lucas, who was convicted last month, and his employer, New York Sal’s Pizzatold the New York Daily News that Rodriguez heated and ate dinner and was busy reading at the front desk without noticing, apparently, how long it was taking the pizza boy to return. The attorney added that Graves and her mother called the doorman after the assault, but that Rodriguez let Lucas go after speaking with him briefly — and then went back to his food. Rodriguez's attorney countered that his client's description helped police nab Lucas quickly, and is representing the doorman in an age-discrimination claim related to his firing.

How much is your cleaning bill? It's probably not $100,000. Yet that's the final figure after the condo board of The Alfred, a 219-unit building 161 W. 61st Street in Manhattan, added fines, unpaid common charges and interest after billing a hoarding couple for cleaning their dangerously unsanitary apartment — and getting a defiant response. And while this all began a full four years ago, the case of the condo cleaning shows that with patience a board can obtain the court decision it needs to be rid of an objectively objectionable resident.

Recent news affecting co-op / condo buyers, sellers, boards and residents. This week, the rape victim at an Upper West Side, doorman high-rise sues the condo board, the managing agent and others after the building staff did not investigate the delivery person's excessively long stay. Plus, more on co-op price floor, the building-workers union honors its own, and why the super-rich pay less in property taxes, percentage-wise, than working-class New Yorkers. Hint: It has to do with that Dept. of Finance factor called "comparables."

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