Md. couple seeks $500K for bedbug damage

Sept. 28, 2010 at 6:03 PM

ELLICOTT CITY, Md., Sept. 28 (UPI) -- A Maryland couple are suing their apartment complex's owners for $500,000 for "significant emotional distress" resulting from a bedbug infestation.

Orville Brown Jr. and Rebecca Brown of Howard County say they and their toddler daughter were forced to move out of their apartment in Ellicott City and throw out most of their belongings because the bedbug infestation was so severe, court papers filed in Howard County Circuit Court say.

"It's a horror story," the Browns' attorney, Daniel W. Whitney, told the Baltimore Sun. "It's very upsetting to have a baby being bitten by bedbugs. Their entire world was turned upside down."

The Browns allege they were told in May that an adjacent unit was infested and that their apartment would be treated as a precaution, but their unit was only inspected and not treated.

In August the couple discovered dozens of bites on their bodies and evidence of bedbugs in their bedroom.

After reporting the infestation, the Browns say the apartment manager sent exterminators to their unit for three inspections but no treatment.

They stored their clothes in their car and slept on the couch, but to no avail, they say. As soon as the itchy welts began to appear on their 3-year-old daughter, the Browns moved in with Rebecca's parents and filed the suit seeking $500,000 in damages for "physical and emotional harm."

Representatives for the owners of the apartment complex had no comment on the lawsuit.

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