Kennisha Gilbert has been trying to evict her tenants for a year, ever since they stopped paying rent and the feces and urine of their 21 dogs began seeping into the bedroom where her two young sons sleep.
But her efforts have been stymied by the state’s moratorium on evictions, which Gilbert, 40 and her husband Roger Charles, 48, now believe is actually endangering their lives.
Last week, Gilbert, a Brooklyn gynecologist, and Charles, an interior decorator, were allegedly attacked by their angry tenants — after they called police to investigate the squalid conditions in which the tenants kept an increasing number of dogs.
“They [the tenants] threatened to kill us and they’ve threatened our children,” Charles told The Post.
Gilbert and Charles have been fighting in court since September 2020 to oust the tenants, at least one of whom has tried to stave off getting booted by filing a COVID-19 Hardship Declaration form proclaiming financial hardship due to the pandemic.
Gilbert rented her upstairs apartment to a man and woman in 2019. The pair left in January, but a few days later, the woman’s son, Ravon Service, 26, moved in with some dogs, along with a second man named Tafaniel Michaud, 27, the landlord said.
Soon the number of dogs increased, and the conditions worsened, recalled the couple.
The canines lived in cages on the second floor rental property, Charles told The Post. The fed up couple made multiple calls to 311, local officials, the city Health Department and the ASPCA.
“Nobody’s doing nothing for us,” said Charles, adding the tenants “call the children names and they keep coming back to live. We can’t stop them.”
The violence came several hours after members of the NYPD’s Animal Cruelty Investigation Squad took away the dogs, and arrested Service and Michaud, who were in the rental apartment Thursday, the couple said.
Service was released on a desk appearance ticket, then returned to the house and was one of four people who allegedly attacked Gilbert and Charles, the couple said.
Gilbert posted a photo of herself with a swollen and cut lip on Twitter, naming her alleged attackers.
“There is no one to protect us,” she wrote. In a separate post, she said that her husband suffered a “rib fracture and facial contusion” in the attack.
“His face is still very swollen but he is home and safe and sound with our family. Thank you to this community for fighting with us to do the right thing! We have no regrets!”
Gilbert had contacted Republican mayoral candidate and Guardian Angel Curtis Sliwa in January to help her deal with the situation on the floor above her, Sliwa told The Post.
“This poor family is living under the code of the streets which is snitches get stitches and end up in ditches,” said Sliwa, who said he is guarding the house in Brooklyn. “Service is clearly taking advantage of the moratorium, and we are afraid he is going to come back and terrorize this family.”
Service, along with 47-year-old Kim Evelyn, and two teen boys, 16 and 17, were arrested and charged with gang assault, assault, menacing and harassment, cops said. This time, Service was not released after arrest.