The Scoundrel of Washington Street: Is Mihaly Kovacsezics the Mayor of Tribeca or a Sticky Fingered Art Thief?
If you ask the well-heeled residents of the western-most parts of Tribeca what they think of Mihaly Kovacsezics, the kindly Hungarian immigrant who painted their walls, installed their televisions or, in some cases, managed their lives, they’ll tell you he was the most adorable and bighearted man in Manhattan.
And at 427 Washington Street, where, from 2007 to 2010, he worked as the handyman for artist and building owner Shirley West, Mr. Kovacsezics—better known as Mike—was everything to everyone in the co-op building: a dog-walker, a personal shopper, a bag-carrier.
At Ponte’s, an Italian restaurant where Mr. Kovacsezics worked as a contractor for 10 years, he was the good-natured handyman who performed odd jobs and enjoyed the occasional espresso at the restaurant’s bar.
“Everyone loved him here,” said Ileana Romero, a Ponte’s bartender. “He was sweet and he was very kind.”
To Shirley West’s niece, Mr. Kovacsezics was like a member of the family. “He was like the Mayor of Tribeca,” said Roxane West. “I loved him.” Read More