The city will investigate the property manager at a Sunnyside condo whose lobby was decorated with fascist imagery and tributes to dead Nazis, following up on allegations by building tenants that they're being harassed and terrorized, the Mayor's office announced this morning.
The New York City Commission on Human Rights will look into what tenants have said is harassment from building manager Neal Milano at 47-55 39th Place, both in the form of a lobby decorated with a swastika and lobby notices calling attention to tenants' non-white guests. In addition, tenants have said that Milano puts Donald Trump bumper stickers on the doors of tenants "who cross him."
"The issues at the building affect people like me who are immigrants and renters the most," an anonymous tenant said in a press release announcing the investigation. "They are the ones who are intimidated and harassed the most and more afraid to say anything. His actions create a hostile environment."
Queens City Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer called the building's lobby a "hate crime" last week, and building residents claim it's all part of a campaign of intimidation against non-white tenants.
Before the city announced the investigation, Sunnyside resident Jeff Orlick went full Darren Keen and tore down the decorations himself. While not a resident of the building, Orlick told DNAinfo he walked into the building and tore down a row of posters featuring Hitler, Mussolini and the Imperial Japanese flag because "someone had to do something."
Milano has yet to speak to the press, but his lawyer contends the lobby decorations were approved by the condo board, and challenged residents who don't care for them to run for the condo board themselves.