Landlord Whipped Tenant: 'If You're Going To Act Like A Child, I'm Going To Treat You Like One'

By Jason Van Hoven on February 21, 2013 3:27 PM EST

A landlord who allegedly whipped his tenant for being late on $2,800 rent is facing an assault charge in Warren County, Ohio, according to reports.

Ron Kronenberger, 53, a local business leader and Waynesville's Citizen of the Year in 2006, was due in court Thursday for an assault charge accusing him of whipping a 29-year-old male tenant with a belt on Jan. 22 at his office at the Hometown Marketplace, a supermarket he owns in Waynesville as the Dayton Daily News notes.

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The landlord allegedly whipped the tenant four times on the bare buttocks with pictures taken showing "little marks," according to a police report.

The report also stated that before the alleged assault, Kronenberger said "If you're going to act like a child, I'm going to treat you like one." The victim then complied with Kronenberger's demands and bent over, placing his hands on a chair, according to WKEF-TV.

"If he owed me $2,800, I'd spank him too," said Dave Roberts of Waynesville.

"For someone who owns a business, it's unheard of. I just couldn't believe it," said Debbie Smith, also of Waynesville.

The alleged tenant whom the landlord whipped, in response to questions from Police Chief Gary Copeland, said that "he was scared and just wanted to get it over with," according to the report.

"At this point, Chief left to attempt to make contact with Ron Kronenberger about the incident, in which Ron admits whipping due to late rent payment in the amount of $2,800," said Officer Daniel Bledsoe in the report narrative.

Kronenberger, former president of the Waynesville Area Chamber of Commerce, declined to make a statement to police.

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