Bedbug Battle Heads to Court

FAYETTEVILLE -- It seems a battle over bed bugs is pitting a local renter against her landlord. Now, a Fayetteville woman is taking her fight to a jury.

"Those bugs are crawling on you while you're sleeping and you don't know about it," says Tessie Tull.  "I have scars on my arms, all over my arms, too."  Tull says her fully furnished apartment also came with a full-blown bed bug infestation and when she asked for a new spot, she says the landlords blamed her.

"They basically said that once I signed the lease, it was my responsibility."

Tull says she developed a strange rash when she moved into the East Oaks Complex.  She went to the doctor and he immediately identified the spots as bed bug bites. The Lindsey managed apartments refused to move her to another building, and Tull says when she broke her lease, she recieved a bill for three months rent and a $300 charge for bed bug treatment."

"Obviously it was their fault because it was a furnished apartment," Tull says. "I've had all my stuff for several years so I know it didn't come from my things. It just seemed to me like this is a problem that's going to affect the whole community if something isn't done about it."

Tull filed a lawsuit and hopes this problem won't happen to others. There is a jury trial scheduled for September but Tulls attorney says Arkansas law isn't making things easy.

Lindsey Management's legal department declined comment on the open litigation.

Tonight at 10:00pm on a KNWA Special Report, find out how tenants legal rights may be lacking in the Natural State.

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