Property Managers No Help After Bed Bug Infestation
Tuesday, July 24, 2012

KANSAS CITY, MO - Neighbors of an eastside apartment complex are still forced out of their homes because of bed bugs, and tenants say the property managers were not helping them in the crisis.

Those residents said they were forced into the street last weekend by officials at Paraclete Manor with very little notice because of a bed bug infestation.

They said they were told to go get a motel room at their own expense, but now it appears the landlord has done an about face.

Frank Berry says a letter was posted in the elevator of the Paraclete Manor apartments near Swope Parkway and Prospect Avenue early Monday morning. It appears to offer assistance to anyone inconvenienced by an unscheduled exterminator visit.

"Some apartments didn't have bugs, but most of them did, so it will affect two-thirds of the building," Berry said.

The newest building bulletin differs vastly from the notices posted over the weekend, where residents were given the names and numbers of motels and a homeless shelter, but no further information or assistance.

The complex said it needed several floors to vacate the building because of a bed bug infestation. Understandable, Berry says, but certainly an inconvenience to most of the tenants who have little means and are physically incapable of leaving on their own.

"The other people here, they are in walkers and wheelchairs. I know they don't have a place to go, so I don't know how they are going to do that," he said.

KCTV5 called the complex for a comment, but was told it was a private matter between the residents and the landlord.

Some residents welcomed the new change, but said it presented another problem.

"People don't have transportation. There is no way they can go to Interstate 70/40 to no motels," resident Sonny Barnes said.

Another resident said their complex is said to be putting people up in vacant, unfurnished apartments.

KCTV5 received two calls from would-be benefactors offering to pay for hotel rooms for those displaced residents. Since apartment workers wouldn't talk to KCTV5, those numbers were passed along to one of the tenants interviewed.

Residents should be able to move back into their apartments by Wednesday, after crews are expected to be finished with the extermination.