So, a man walked into a New York courtroom with a bag filled with dead rats. Was he trying to send a message to a witness? No, he was attempting to present evidence of the rodent problem that his landlord allegedly refuses to address. His demonstration was not well received.
Ramon Severino is a comedian by profession, but his little stunt was anything but humorous. Severino refuses to pay $326 of his rent at his Hamilton Heights apartment because he claims it's a rat's paradise, and that the landlord will not address the problem. Here's what the Daily News had to say:
Pandemonium broke out inside Manhattan Housing Court when Ramon Severino, 52, whipped out a plastic bag stuffed with the seven bloody carcasses. A court officer hollered, “Do not let him pull anything out of his bag," as court observers bolted from the room, witnesses told the Daily News.
An officer snatched the pungent evidence from Severino and it was hauled out of the building. “It was nasty,” said Elliot Betances, a lawyer for Severino’s landlord, Riverside Community Management.
While his method may be questionable, other neighbors say that Severino is right, as their apartments have rodent problems as well. One neighbor says her apartment has rats "everywhere," and Severino claims that he can't even chill without rats running across his feet.
Question his method if you like, but it paid off: The Department of Housing Preservation and Development ordered an inspection of his apartment. Apparently, a bag of dead rats gets the job done.