The story of Robert "Preppy Killer" Chambers's drug bust has taken its inevitable turn into a real-estate saga. Would Chambers and his girlfriend, Shawn Kovell, have been so exposed to drugs had they not had the opportunity to move back to New York and live in Kovell's late mother's apartment? That's what one friend wondered — after all, they were clean when they were living in Georgia. Or, did the pressure of the $1,800-a-month rent drive them to selling drugs out of financial desperation, as Kovell's godmother suspects. We won't know until the trial, if ever, but what we do know is that whatever factor it played, their apartment was a killer deal (was that in bad taste? Oh, don't be mad. The Post would have said it!).
Their one-bedroom at 357 East 57th Street, apartment 5B, could sell for about $500,000 to $700,000, according to real-estate Websites we checked. Their rent-stabilized $1,800 monthly bill is a steal for a building so close to Sutton Place. And having vigilant neighbors (it was tips and calls from 311 that eventually led police to Chambers's door) who believe in safety and security (all of the building's political donors gave to Rudy Giuliani this year) is a plus you can't put a value on. Which makes the fact that cops found the place littered with drugs, plastic bags, and rotting filth feel all the more criminal. Come on! This is the Upper East Side — people would kill to live up here! (Okay, fine, we're going to hell.)