Langley Park Tenants, Living With Bedbugs And Mold, Fight Landlord | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Langley Park Tenants, Living With Bedbugs And Mold, Fight Landlord

Play associated audio
Residents say brownouts and blackouts are common and apartments become stifling.
Armando Trull
Residents say brownouts and blackouts are common and apartments become stifling.

The tenants of the Bedford Station, Victoria Station, and Newbury Square apartment complexes filed complaints with Prince George's County Thursday alleging dozens of code violations.

At a rally before a meeting with the apartments' management Wednesday, a man with a bullhorn asks his fellow protesters in Spanish if they want to keep living with bedbugs, rats or roaches. Approximately 100 tenants of three Langley Park apartment complexes are in attendance, and they claim their apartments are overrun by vermin.

Living for years with bedbugs

David Fraser has lived here for two years, and has had to keep changing where he sleeps due to bedbugs.

"They were in the bedroom, so I moved to the living room," he says. "So they came to the living room so I had to sleep inside my car." Fraser pays $930 per month for his one bedroom apartment. But as he wryly points out, "the bedbugs are living for free."

The apartment buildings are under court receivership after the original owner defaulted.

Many tenants say a succession of management companies has failed to address maintenance issues, including frequent power outages, mold, and broken appliances and fixtures.

Tenants: Management hasn't cleaned up mold

Tenant Ashley Baily shows a kitchen cabinet that has turned black inside with mold and a bathroom ceiling full of holes and leaks.

"I think it's like three years ago, and they don't come and fix it," she says of the black mold and the water leak that's causing it.

George Van Beesen's company took over the management of the Bedford Station, Victoria Station and Newbury Square apartments in January and says he has moved to fix outstanding issues.

Management: 'we have no code violations'

"We're making the repairs that are reported to us," he says. "That's the frustrating part, because they are not reporting to us that they need repairs.

"We are current and have no county or city code violations," he says.

But when Beesen offered that explanation to tenants during a town hall meeting Wednesday night, the reaction was an uproar.

Angry tenants ended the meeting abruptly, and Thursday they filed complaints with Prince Georges County. They say they hope that will improve conditions.

NPR

Handmade Signs From Homeless People Lead To Art, Understanding

Artist Willie Baronet is on a 24-city, 31-day trek across the country this month, buying handmade signs from homeless people. He says the project has changed the way he views homelessness.
NPR

You'll Be Maaaaaaaad About Goat If You Follow This Chef's Recipe

Goat — it's the other red meat! And it's easy to mess up. Kenyan-born Kevin Onyona reveals the secrets to a tender yet hearty stew: You've got to break down that meat, and you've got to give it love.
WAMU 88.5

McDonnell Corruption Trial Begins Monday

It's a first for the Commonwealth of Virginia on Monday, as Bob McDonnell becomes the first governor of Old Dominion to face potential jail time.

NPR

What It's Like To Own Your Very Own Harrier Jump Jet

The Harrier Jump Jet is known for vertical take-offs and landings. It also has an accident-prone track record, but that didn't dissuade one pilot from buying his dream plane.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.