The new owners at Suncrest Village Apartments are pumping a lot of money into renovating the vacant and boarded-up units at the complex.
Dave Ramlal is the manager. He says, “Every unit is going to be completely remodeled we’re changing the names we have security on site 24 hours.”
While changes are clearly underway at the Alief-area complex, there is another problem long-time residents say isn’t being addressed.
Jacqueline Johnson has been living in the complex for a year. She says, “You need to do something about it; you have an infestation here. Stop being in denial; there are too many people who have bed bugs here.”
You do know what bed bugs are? Those parasitic insects that love to feed on human blood. They also prefer living in close proximity to humans mainly in and around your bed.
That’s the problem Jaqueline Johnson says she has in her first floor apartment at Suncrest. She says they’ve promised exterminators for the last month.
Johnson says, “I’ve been killing them and picking them up with paper towels then you got blood all over your clothes. My grandkids were sleeping on the floors because we can’t sleep in the bed, now we can’t sleep on the sofa, now we can’t sleep on the love seat, I’ve been standing up because I can’t sleep.”
Johnson is not alone. Grace Ortiz also lives at Suncrest and has a problem with the creepy crawlers in her unit.
Ortiz says, “It’s horrible, you’re itching throughout the night and you’ll itch to where you will bleed and you can get scabies.”
We tracked down the apartment manager Dave Ramlal. He says he is addressing the problem since taking over less than a month ago. But he says Johnson has no reason to complain because she’s behind on her rent.
“(Manager) She technically doesn’t have a lease with us, her lease has been up since April. (Isiah) So why hasn’t she been evicted? (Manager) There’s paperwork. (Isiah) You took her to court? (Manager) We’re taking her to court? (Isiah) You haven’t taken her to court. (Manager) In the process of it. (Isiah) So she hasn’t been evicted - a judge has to say you’re evicted. (Manager) uhm. (Isiah) So she still is a resident here? (Manager) For now.”
Johnson maintains her rent is being paid and subsidized through a Harris County rental assistance program.
In the meantime, Johnson says the rent issue has no bearing on a bug-free environment for tenants.
“We’re gonna clean it up, we got pest control coming out here tomorrow so we will take care of it from there,” says Dave Ramlal.