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‘He’s four months old!’ Mom says infant son got bed bug bites at Essex Village

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. -- A frustrated mother who lives in Essex Village told Henrico County leaders Thursday night about the bed bugs she said have gotten into her apartment from two neighboring apartments.

"My son got bed bug bites all over him... he’s four months old," she said.

Later she showed CBS 6 reporter Melissa Hipolit the bites on his leg and arm.

The section 8 complex has been the focus of a CBS 6 Problem Solvers investigation for months after HUD failed the complex in January.

Just last month, HUD passed the complex after the owners made some repairs, but, once again, failed the individual apartment units.

"I deserve to have some type of order in my home. I don't deserve to be living with no bed bugs," the mom said.

She, along with a few dozen other Essex Village residents, attended a Town Hall meeting hosted by their Henrico Board Member Frank Thornton.

"You have certain rights. One of the rights you have is you're a citizen of Henrico County. Every citizen is supposed to be treated in a respectful way," Thornton told the group.

Thornton and other county leaders, including County Manager John Vithoulkas, listened as several residents took the microphone and talked about the ongoing problems at the Section 8 housing complex.

"I try to keep everything clean, but my carpet is disgusting," one elderly woman said. "They were supposed to come and replaced it and they haven't."

"You can fix my kitchen, and she live under me my kitchen floods what's going to happen? I'm downstairs vice versa it's going to mess up all over again so what is we supposed to do? Just be ok with it?" another woman said.

Essex Village

Thornton told the group the county is doing everything it can to help, but it's time for residents to get organized and advocate for themselves.

"We need to organize a little bit. When you organize people respect you and they have to follow through on that," Thornton said.

Thornton also told the group to be careful about rumors.

He said some residents contacted him worried that Henrico County wanted to tear down the complex and force the residents to move, and he said that is absolutely not true.

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