NYC’s 'worst' landlord surrenders, taken to Rikers Island jail

NEW YORK — The city’s most infamous landlord is now at the city’s most infamous jail.

Daniel Ohebshalom, who goes by Dan Shalom, turned himself in to the New York City Sheriff’s Office Thursday afternoon after a warrant for his arrest was issued on March 8 in connection with “egregious” conditions at two of his Washington Heights buildings. He could held up to 60 days on Rikers Island.

The warrant was issued after Ohebshalom was found in contempt of court by a housing court judge for failing to correct nearly 700 outstanding violations at 705 and 709 170th Street in Upper Manhattan. He will be held on Rikers “unless and until” he makes the fixes.

It’s a rare instance of a bad city landlord facing criminal consequences for poor conditions on their properties.

Ohebshalom was listed, by proxy, as the number one worst landlord in the city by Public Advocate Jumaane Williams in December for the second year in a row, with a “staggering” record 3,293 open housing violations.

Tenants in his buildings have faced “extensive” hazardous conditions including no heat, peeling lead paint, vermin infestations, leaks and mold.

“The sheer volume of extant hazardous and immediately hazardous violations bespeaks the extent of respondents’ contempt,” Manhattan Judge Jack Stoller wrote in his decision earlier this month.

As of Friday Ohebshalom is being held at the Eric M. Taylor Center on Rikers, per Department of Correction records. His attorney could not immediately be reached for comment.

The Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) first took Ohebshalom to court over his 170th Street buildings in 2021, and it was the agency’s suits that ultimately led to his arrest.

“Slumlords in New York City are officially on notice. Landlords in New York City will not get away with putting our families in unsafe, unhealthy, and downright unlivable conditions,” HPD Commissioner Adolfo Carrión Jr. said in a statement Thursday. “Today, justice is being served, and tenants are one step closer to getting the conditions that they not only need but deserve.”

The next court appearance listed for the case is April 15.