Waterloo landlord accused of exchanging free rent for sex - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Waterloo landlord accused of exchanging free rent for sex

WATERLOO (KWWL)-- The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development announced it's charging Elders, Inc., employee Michael Nieman, and J.S. Property Management L.C. with housing discrimination.

The parties are accused of harassing female tenants.

HUD reports Nieman told two women at Park Tower Apartments they could exchange sex for rent, or other housing services.

Eula Harris lived in the Park Tower Apartments for two and a half years and while living there she felt targeted.

"Over the two and a half years I was down there the manager made gestures and said he would have sex for rent. It really made me feel uncomfortable," said Harris.

Nieman is now charged with housing discrimination. In court documents Nieman denies the claims saying he never offered sex for free rent.

Harris says she did not have a sexual relationship with Nieman, but other women did.

"When I moved out I had one girl call me and said she had been doing it the last two years because that was the only way she could pay for her rent and I said no you don't have to do that. There are other choices you can make," said Harris.

The day Harris moved out of the apartments she went to the Waterloo Commission on Human Rights and issued a formal complaint. From there The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development got involved.

"The responding party receives HUD money and often times when that is true HUD will ask us to refer the case back to them for investigation," said Robin Means, Waterloo Commission on Human Rights. 

HUD interviewed about 100 people and about five women came forward saying Nieman harassed them. There are only two women who wrote a formal complaint.

KWWL called Nieman and he forwarded us to his attorney. She says they plan to vigorously defend the claims and those claims will be tried in the appropriate forum.

The HUD charge will be heard by a United States Administrative Law Judge unless any party to the charge elects to have the case heard in federal district court.

Online Reporter: Nikki Newbrough

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