Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Slumlord Howie Gangestad Reportedly Ripped Off "Joy The Cat Lady" In A Real Estate Deal...

Photo and blog post by John Hoff

When I wrote about slumlord Howie Gangestad and how he'd flown under the radar of this blog for so long (quite odd, because this blog pulls no punches when it comes to naming the names of slumlords) an anonymous commenter came on the blog and virtually whispered in my ear, saying Gangestad had ripped off Joy Mattice, a/k/a "Joy The Cat Lady," whose humanitarian work I have mentioned before.

Well, it turns out...

...there really is something to the "Howie Ripped Off The Cat Lady" rumor. A few hours ago I was visiting my girlfriend, Jordan Neighborhood "Super Citizen" Megan Goodmundson, and Joy the Cat Lady came through the alley. I chatted with her for a while (actually helping her to retrieve one of her boots that was stuck in a snowy fence, lost in a feline-assisting misadventure) and Joy gave me the dirt on Howie.

In summary (according to Joy) she and her late husband loaned Howie $450,000. Joy's husband, known as "Buzz," was a much beloved Minneapolis police officer. When Buzz died, Howie showed up at the funeral and told Joy, in so many words, he wasn't paying back the money because Buzz was dead and Joy was old and wouldn't be alive much longer, either, so what did she need with credit? Joy reported her response--there at her husband's funeral--was to call Howie a son-of-a-bitch.

Joy says Howie has ripped off a bunch of other people and these folks are gathering up their evidence, hoping to get some kind of legal action against Howie. (I strongly suspect it was one of these individuals who contacted me through the comment function of my blog and put me on this story) These folks want Joy to assist and provide her testimony.

There are more details, but that's what I managed to memorize without notes, talking to Joy in the alley. Talk did naturally turn to felines: Joy says the city is cracking down on people, even folks who feed strays. Joy says she has many kittens that need homes and folks should contact her for free kittens.

The previously mentioned blog post has contact info to help Joy with financial donations or--any time you like, just about--get yourself a cat for a pet.

Does anybody have more info about these allegations? Including any court file numbers, property addresses, names, etc?


Anonymous said...

$450,000 feeds a lot of cats!

Anonymous said...

I know another property owner that lent Howie a bunch of money 6 or 7 years ago and when Howie did not pay him back, he just recently took back one of Howie's piece of crap houses and has fixed it up. Since he did not trust Howie, he had Howie deed him one of his "free and clear" houses in case Howie tried to screw him. But guess what, Howie then sold the house on a contract for deed and a bank gave a subsequent purchaser a loan but did not do good title work. So Howie still got a bunch of money out of the deal but at least the original investor who loaned Howie the money way back was able to show the bank his recorded deed and the bank was screwed. So Howie in effect comitted bank fraud!

Johnny Northside! said...

Can you give me names and addresses? I'm posting your comment but I have no proof in front of me that it's true, for the record.

Anonymous said...

The house address was 3507 Morgan Ave. N. and the bank was Inter Bank in Edina and they lost over $70,000 to Howie's scam. My real estate broker, Craig Murphy, had showed me the place when it was for sale after it had been foreclosed on by Inter Bank and that's when this investor took it for his unpaid loan to Howie.

Anonymous said...

I just have to say that anyone who places cat food outside should be arrested.

She's not just feeding cats... she's attracting every other rodent and animal known to man and enabling them to thrive in our neighborhoods. I love cats... but the strays are out of control and feeding them needs to stop.

She might as well breed cats and set them loose.

If I ever see someone feeding nuisance cats in my parts I will chase them off the block. I trap cats and bring them to the humane society... maybe I should follow her around so I know where to set traps!

NoMi Passenger said...

Not defending Joy's tactic here, but just adding to the discussion.

There are many people who don't appreciate what Joy does and some people chase her away or confront her or whatever. I can see those points.

I do know Joy has been known to trap cats as well and work on spaying them and/or finding them homes.

I think she does anything she can to reduce the population and find them good homes without danger of euthanization, but still has the ultimate humanitarianism to feed the ones that are "still out there".

So I guess she has a two pronged approach. Plus, I think she knows if she sets up regular feeding spots, it is easier to trap them eventually, because both her and the cats will know right where to go.

But you are right, we need less cats in the world. Saying anyone who feeds cats should be arrested is probably a bit hyperbolic for my taste.

Anonymous said...

What NoMi needs is a bounty for cat pelts. Even something like $20 a piece would provide a source of income for the citizens of NoMi and help to alleviate the cat problems.

The people in Edina or Woodbury don't tolerate stray cats and there is no reason that we should here in NoMi. It is going to be hard to revitalize this place with stray cats running everywhere.

Johnny Northside! said...

That's just stupid and will never happen.

However, I have to wonder what TROLL PELTS would be worth.

veg*nation said...

Stray cats may either be domesticated cats which can be trapped and adopted, or they can be feral cats, which cannot be adopted. Feral cats need to be trapped, neutered, and released. This is called TNR, and there is a lot of scholarship out there on how successful these programs are at humanely reducing the number of feral cats. One really great book that touches on the history of TNR practice and philosophy is called "Redemption" by Jason Winograd.

I would imagine that Joy is in contact with Feline Rescue, which has a cutting edge (TNR) program and works with compassionate volunteers like Joy who do this kind of selfless work. http://tinyurl.com/67zkxm3

People who interfere with the work that Joy is doing are willfully contributing to the tragic overpopulation of stray cats.

Anonymous said...

Actually it's perfectly reasonable for Minneapolis to pay a bounty on stray cats, just like gophers and other pests have a bounty elsewhere. However as the city is broke and facing the loss of NRP funds and LGA there is not really any money to pay for the cat pelts. If the greedy Republicans would leave LGA alone we might have funds to pay for the bounty on stray cats in NOMI.

veg*nation said...

As I'm quite sure that dedicated proponents of animal torture such as Anon 7:36 are aware, cats are subject to animal welfare legislation, and people who kill them can be charged with animal cruelty.

Anonymous said...


Torturing a cat is animal cruelty. Merely killing it is not.

After all, people who kill deer or use rat poison aren't prosecuted for animal cruelty. Similarly, people who shoot, poison, or bludgeon cats are not committing animal cruelty.

And feeding stray cats is a much more significant crime than torturing a cat. When a cat is tortured only one inconsequential animal is impacted. When strays are fed the whole neighborhood suffers. (Don't take this post to endorse animal cruelty, I simply believe that reasonable cat population measures should be undertaken.)

I haven't seen this cat lady feed strays myself, but if anyone does than a 311 call is definitely in order.

NoMi Passenger said...

Feeding stray cats is a crime?

Whatevs, sicko.

That's the last comment that we will entertain here on your twisted stray cat theories, go write about it somewhere else if you must.

veg*nation said...

@animal torturing troll at 8:52: companion animals are protected by animal welfare laws that do not cover other animals. as clearly explained in my previous post, TNR practices humanely reduce stray cat populations.

Anonymous said...

Some idiot mayor in Iowa had a cat bounty. I'm not sure it was too successful: