A woman was served an eviction notice by her landlord just two days after being attacked inside of her apartment.
On Wednesday, Danita Mendez, 57, of Kalihi, Hawaii, had reportedly just returned to her apartment after doing laundry when 36-year-old Mavourneen Rombawa approached her and asked to come inside and use the bathroom.
“Had your mom let her in her apartment before?” a KHON2 reporter asked Mendez’s daughter, Natasha Saloricman (interview shown below).
“No. This would be the first time,” Saloricman said. “I’ve asked my mom. She said no, this is the first time.”
Saloricman said that her mother did not have a conversation with Rombawa prior to letting her inside to use the bathroom.
“She wouldn’t talk to the lady, because she knew the lady was not well," Saloricman added.
Rombawa reportedly stabbed Mendez in the neck, beat her, and tried to set her apartment on fire.
“Her couch was the one set on fire,” Saloricman said. “From what my mom told me, she used a lighter. She set the couch on fire.”
Rombawa was subsequently arrested and charged with attempted murder, kidnapping, terroristic threatening and arson.
When Saloricman visited her mother’s home to clean up just two days after the attack, she arrived to find an eviction notice on the door. The notice cited a clause in the rental agreement that permits the landlord to terminate the agreement if the tenant or any guests damage the property.
“I’m shocked. I expected to go there and open the door and start cleaning my mom’s house,” Saloricman said. “This is not her guest. She’s a victim so this is not right.”
According to real estate attorney Ryan Engle, the landlord likely does not have cause to evict Mendez, despite the clause in the rental agreement.
“It would be hard to say under the law that somebody who would break into premises and do you physical harm would be considered a guest, because by definition, you didn’t invite them there,” he told KHON2. “It wasn’t a consensual relationship and they took it upon themselves to do that.”
Photo Credit: khon2.com