'Landlords from hell' face felonies for theft, stalking

By CAROLINE LEE, UPI.com  |  June 20, 2013 at 2:44 PM
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Landlords Kip and Nicole Macy may be worst landlords ever.

The husband-and-wife pair own an apartment building in San Francisco. In 2006, the Macys decided they wanted to get rid of their tenants, so they went to extreme measures so the renters would leave on their own.

They stole tenants' property, changed their locks so they couldn't get in and drenched their beds and electronics in ammonia. Those are just minor issues compared the ones that led the two to be charged with felonies.

Court documents say the Macys cut holes in the floor of one tenant's apartment with a power saw while he was inside his apartment.

"He actually saw the saw coming up and trying to saw through," Assistant District Attorney Kelly Burke said. They also cut out sections of the joists supporting the floor to make it collapse.

Nicole Macy met with a city building inspector to learn which beams made the apartment structurally sound so she could cut through it.

A former property manager for the Macys was later threatened at gunpoint after he refused to cut the joists himself.

Once a tenant raised charges, Nicole Macy sent emails pretending to be that tenant and fired his attorney. She threatened her own attorneys with a message to kidnap and dismember their children and signed off as another tenant.

Over a two-year period, the Macys shut off the power, gas and water. They boarded up the windows while the tenants still lived there.

The couple fled the country after their 2009 indictment. They were apprehended last month in Italy and returned to the U.S., where they will be sentenced under a plea deal to four years and four months in prison. Under the plea deal, the Macys, who no longer own the property, must pay restitution to victims.

Lisa DewBerry, Kip Macy’s attorney, said the couple could have faced a maximum of 16 years in prison if tried on all charges.

DewBerry said district attorney George Gascon "knew he could not prove everything, so he settled for one quarter of the time that he charged.

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