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Grandmother Facing Eviction From Little Italy Apartment Given More Time By Court

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- A grandmother who is facing eviction from her Little Italy apartment was in housing court on Thursday.

As CBS2's Cindy Hsu reported, a relieved Adele Sarno was given more time to fight.

"Today is Holy Thursday. Tomorrow is Good Friday. God is with us, that's what it is," Sarno said.

The 85-year-old woman was facing an eviction deadline of Monday, April 6, to move out of her apartment above the Italian American Museum on Grand Street. A judge put things on hold until April 13. The delay gave supporters like civil rights attorney Norman Siegel time to sift through years of legal paper work.

"Maybe there's a way for everyone to come together and try to be thoughtful in resolving this amicably," Siegel said.

Sarno has lived in the apartment since 1962, when rent was $150 a month. She now pays $820 and her landlord, which happens to be the Italian American Museum, wants the market rate $3,500.

Some neighbors who just recently heard about the story could not believe it.

"That's what's so reprehensible. That another Italian is doing this to us. We take care of our own, so this is so out there," Vita Sabella said.

While the museum wouldn't go on camera it issued a statement saying, "rent-regulation is not applicable to the dwelling in question."

Sarno's granddaughter who lives on Staten Island said she's concerned about all the stress.

"My grandmother's going to be 86-years-old. We worry about her everyday and we're going to continue to worry, but we're going to fight," Vitinarose Sudano said.

On Saturday, neighbors and community groups plan to rally in front of the museum, hoping to get more support for Sarno.

The feisty grandmother said she's trying to stay positive.

"You got to fight in life for everything you do. You just have to have faith," she said.

She said her faith is stronger than ever.


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