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Seven women told The Palladium-Times Waterbury made housing offers hinting at sex.
Other women allege they received offers with less explicit suggestions of sex; in each case they say they perceived Waterbury’s actions as an unwelcome request for sexual favors in exchange for discounts.
A 66-year-old Oswego woman alleged she viewed an apartment of Waterbury’s in the mid-1980s and “the sense I got from him at the time was that he would exchange sexual favors for rent.”“I’m pretty sure I didn’t look interested in the apartment,” the woman alleged.
Most of the women said they had not retained records of lease agreements, or email or text exchanges with the landlord.
In addition to seven women alleging Waterbury tried to sexualize housing transactions, two former tenants alleged Waterbury made unwelcome remarks, including repeated unwanted advances or comments about a tenant’s sexuality.
Another woman Waterbury hired to perform maintenance work in Oswego in 2015 alleged in an interview that he sexually harassed her for months.
Most of the women interviewed said they were unaware of any investigations into allegations against Waterbury when they agreed to go on the record with The Palladium-Times. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) have consistently deemed sexual harassment a form of housing discrimination.OSWEGO — Several women accuse Oswego landlord Doug Waterbury of instigating brazen sex-for-rent propositions in alleged encounters involving tenants and apartment hunters since the 1980s.In interviews over the last several months, 10 women have told The Palladium-Times they endured offers of sexual schemes, unwanted advances or unwelcome remarks from Waterbury, a long-time landlord and upstate businessman who’s previously faced condemnation from tenants and code officers for documented maintenance failings.Reached by phone, Waterbury said only "I have no comment."When a reporter asked about the lawsuit and read a paragraph specifying that several women in in encounters dating back 30 years, Waterbury repeated "As I said, I have no comment."A longtime Port City landlord, Waterbury also owns the Campus Hill Apartments in Morrisville, the Sterling Renaissance Festival, Sylvan Beach Amusement Park and Santa’s Workshop in Essex County’s North Pole, according to real property records.Some properties are listed under his name, others under his companies, Ontario Realty Inc. The Palladium-Times confirmed Waterbury owned the properties mentioned by most of the women interviewed, but three could not recall exact addresses.“I knew he had a lot of properties.” The woman, in her mid-20s, alleged Waterbury then grabbed his crotch and referenced “trades” for rent.