FOX 66 News at Ten
WNEM TV5 has a follow-up to the ongoing bed bug problem at a local senior housing complex.
Tenants at Maplewood Manor in Saginaw say they've asked for help getting rid of the pests for some time but no one is listening.
And now, after months of complaints, some legal help is on the way.
Less than 24 hours after TV5's report aired, representatives from Legal Services of Eastern Michigan went to Maplewood Manor to speak with the residents, who are their new clients.
"You can't sleep with bed bugs, I found that out," said Tom Kennedy, president of the Maplewood Manor Residents Association.
Kennedy and other residents at Maplewood say they've been living with bed bugs for far too long. "I've had mine for over two years," said Kennedy.
As TV5 reported in our Tough Questions investigation on Tuesday, they've complained to the Saginaw County Housing Commission who owns the building, but they say nothing has been done to get rid of the bugs. Now they've called in reinforcements.
"We had some of the tenants come to us and explain the situation," said attorney Dan Straka, with Legal Services of Eastern Michigan. "Once we figured out it was the entire building, we decided to take on the tenants as a client."
Legal Services of Eastern Michigan announced Wednesday it will represent the residents.
Straka met with them just hours after TV5's story aired. "Our priority is to get the bed bugs eliminated," said Straka.
Most residents at Maplewood are senior citizens on fixed incomes. Some have had to throw out mattresses and other furniture because they were infested with bed bugs, and they want to be reimbursed for the expense.
"I threw out two sets of twin mattresses. A lot of people spent money on sprays," explained Kennedy.
"There's no doubt. Some people came here with nothing, now they've got even less," said Sherry Tucker, who lives in another building run by the Saginaw Housing Commission. She says they also had a bed bug problem and had to call in legal services to get action. She says they were a big help. "It was a nightmare ... it's kind of easing up now," Tucker said.
Residents at Maplewood are hoping for the same improvement sometime soon.
"What our residents want is this situation taken care of so we have no more bed bugs," said Kennedy.
Even though legal services is now involved, TV5 is told there's not going to be a lawsuit just yet.
Lawyers want to try to negotiate with the Saginaw Housing Commission to get the matter taken care of before heading to court.
TV5 reporter Kristin Moore spoke to the executive director of the housing commission on Wednesday. She did not want to comment on this new development but told TV5 that they have been trying to resolve the problem.
Copyright 2013 WNEM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
Friday, November 8 2013, 09:31 AM EST
National News Headlines
|Rural museum's WWII exhibit saved from scope of new gun laws|
|Tough new gun controls in the state of Washington had the director of a small-town museum ready to pull nearly a dozen guns from a World War II exhibit, until a local firearms dealer helped him ensure the display was legal.|
|Authorities say Florida man who shot deputy had threatened police before|
|A man who had made previous threats against police set his house on fire Saturday and ambushed the first sheriff's deputy who responded, fatally shooting the deputy and wounding another before he was killed by a police officer who lives nearby, a law enforcement official said.|
|Rhodes Trust names 32 US students to receive full scholarships to pursue studies at Oxford|
|The Rhodes Trust says 32 U.S. men and women have been named Rhodes scholars and will enter Oxford University next October.|
|University of Virginia suspends fraternity activities after sex assault claim|
|The University of Virginia on Saturday suspended activities at all campus fraternal organizations amid an investigation into a published report in which a student described being sexually assaulted by seven men at a fraternity in 2012.|
|Police say naked man crashed through ceiling, attacked elderly man at Boston airport|
|State police say a man stripped inside a women's bathroom at Boston's Logan Airport, climbed into a dropped ceiling, crashed through it and landed on the floor, then assaulted an elderly man while he was still naked and bleeding.|
|As barricades go up, Ferguson awaits grand jury decision; group says no decision reached|
|Crews erected barricades around the building where a grand jury has been considering whether to indict the Ferguson police officer who shot and killed Michael Brown, even as a grand jury decision seemed unlikely this weekend.|
|Police officer in Cleveland shoots, wounds 12-year-old boy brandishing fake gun at rec center|
|Police say a 12-year-old boy brandishing what turned out to be a fake gun at a Cleveland recreation center was shot and wounded by a responding officer.|
|Police: Dad accidentally shoots adult son to death during hunting trip in New Jersey|
|Police say a father has accidentally shot and killed his adult son during a hunting trip in New Jersey.|
|Ferguson grand jury decision unlikely this weekend, sources say|
|The grand jury considering whether to indict the Ferguson police officer who shot and killed teenager Michael Brown are unlikely to meet and render a verdict this weekend, sources told Fox News Saturday.|
|Bighorn sheep bolts from Los Angeles Zoo, gets struck by hit-and-run driver near Griffith Park|
|Police say a bighorn sheep that escaped from the Los Angeles Zoo was struck by a driver who fled the scene.|