Odessa woman finds bed bugs in apartment, later receives eviction notice

Odessa woman finds bed bugs in apartment, later receives eviction notice

ODESSA, TX (KWES) - Tenants at the Houston Arms Apartment found bed bugs crawling around in their beds.

"If I had known, I wouldn't have moved in," said one tenant who moved in the complex in April.

She noticed bed bugs crawling on her bed.

"I woke up and there was one on my pillow next to me," she said.

She said after complaining to management, she received an eviction notice.

"I asked the landlord if she could spray. She refused to. I asked if I could spray. She said no, that they had people that took care of that."

We met with other tenants who said they were also getting bit.

"The same situation with them. They said they complained and that after they complained, they all got evicted."

We reached out to the landlord of the apartment complex, who told us an exterminator comes once a month. If a tenant wants an exterminator earlier, they would have to find someone who is licensed. Then, they bring a receipt so the landlord can deduct it from their rent.

"About the bed bug issue, I already called the owner of the property," said the landlord. "I'm going to talk to him to get the bug man in here to spray all the units."

The landlord said moving forward, the apartment units will be sprayed down.

"I'm going to send out letters today. I'm giving all the tenants 24 hours for me to come in to inspect all the tenants units. If we inspect it and it isn't clean, then we'll get the bug man to come spray. Then we'll move on from there."

She said tenants who are evicted don't get evicted from complaints, but for unpaid rent. The tenant said she has proof of payment but doesn't want to continue paying the rest because of the bed bug infestation.

"To me, the right thing would be the owner let me go to a different unit that's not infested or help me move into another place. He was aware of the problem before I moved in and didn't tell me," said the tenant.

She said her belongings in the apartment will have to be thrown out. She has set up a GoFundMe account due to tight funds. She said the apartment will not give her a refund. The eviction may lead her to moving out of the city.

"I can't take any of my furniture because it would just re-infest wherever I go. I have no source of being able to move."

The Ector County Health Department said there is no city ordinance against bed bugs because they don't transmit infections.

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