The Bedford Gates Estate

In the late summer of 2005 I helped to open and began occupying a building that had previously housed the Bedford-Stuyvesant Community Mental Health Center. I lived there with several activists over the course of the following months. With the help of my friend Michael Shenker we made efforts to ensure there was enough electricity to power a refrigerator, electric radiators, and other appliances. This was not a minor endeavor since much of the electric wiring in the building had been stripped for the valuable copper elements. In February 2008 one of my housemates and I were arrested in the building and charged with trespassing. This took place despite the fact that police first visited the building months prior and were aware that we were living there. We also received mail, but that did not matter. Ultimately the charges were dropped and we chose not to reoccupy the building, which was not long after demolished to make way for condos.