ELDERLY DISABLED WOMAN VS. YA TERMITE AND PEST CONTROL COMPANY AND THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE OF GEORGIA
I am an disabled senior woman and always dreamed I purchased my own home. I closed on 5/27/12. Ever since I moved into my new home I have been tormented by these extremely tiny bugs that fly and crawl. They have a painful bit and get into my eyes, nose, ears, and personal areas (basically all over my body). I've woken up with them crawling around in my mouth! I haven't slept well since I closed because of the tiny bugs aggravating me. I had no idea what kind bugs were in my home and wanted them gone, so I decided to try using bug sprays purchased at Walmart, but the sprays didn't kill the bugs.
I didn’t want to call an exterminator because I was very concerned about the chemicals they use in homes, but a neighbor convinced me to do so. On 11/20/12, I called a very popular and well know termite and pest control company (“YA”) here in Savannah, Georgia, to come to my home to investigate and to tell me what kind of bugs were in my home. The appointment was scheduled for 11/26/12 at 2:00 p.m. A man representing YA came to my home, investigated and told me I had mites, and that he'd bomb my house using something to kill mites. I asked him if the chemical he was planning on using would leave a residue because I was very concerned about it getting all over everything in my home, and he said “no.” I asked him again if he was absolutely sure, and again he said “no.” The man said that I didn't need to put anything up or put anything like food products in my garage.
He said it would take him an hour to bomb my house for mites. I went across the street to a neighbor’s house and not 15 minutes later, I saw him getting into his truck. I asked him if he was finished and he said yes. He was carrying a can with a hose and spray nozzle. I thought this was very unusual since he said he was going to bomb my home. He told me to stay out of my home for 3-4 hours and drove off.
I spent the night with a friend and on Tuesday afternoon, I walked into my kitchen from my garage and slipped and fell on oily pesticide that was all over my kitchen floor. I looked around and saw it all over the place dripping from my walls and ceilings. I was in so much pain that I called 911 who came and took me to St. Joseph’s Hospital for immediate medical attention. After taking x-rays and a CAT scan, I was discharged from the hospital around 4:30 a.m. I had no other choice but to return to my home because I couldn't get in touch with my friends.
I have 2 artificial hips, severe arthritis mainly in my back and a neurostimulator in my spinal cord and I was extremely upset about falling on a hard kitchen floor. My hips were hurting, my lower back and buttocks were hurting and the pain was radiating up my back and down my legs. I was so afraid that the neurostimulator wires had dislocated in my spinal cord. The last thing I needed was a fall like this. When I got home I looked around and saw that the clear oily pesticide was all over everything in my home from the ceiling to below the carpet. It was saturated!
Wednesday morning I called YA, and spoke to a man named James, who said he'd never heard of anything like this happening and that he wanted to meet me at my house to investigate and take pictures on Thursday morning, November 29th. I told him that my house is uninhabitable and that I can’t live in my home because of the poison, but that I would meet him there.
Late Wednesday night, I called the Department of Agriculture (“DOA”) and left a voice message for a man named Ken S. (last name withheld) to call me back. Early Thursday morning I spoke to Ken S. and told him what happened to my home, and he said they (DOA) would help me and get to the bottom of this by doing an investigation. Ken S. told me to call a man named Mark M. (last name withheld) to start the paper work, which I did and I explained everything to Mark M.
Mark M. said they (he and Ken S.) would help me by investigating and that he would do "whatever he could" to find out what YA’s representative used inside my home. Ken S. called me back and said he had orders to get to my home immediately and to re-schedule my appointment with James from YA for around 3:00 pm instead of 11:00 am, which was previously scheduled. I called YA and left a message for James.
When Ken S. arrived at my home and while inside my home, he told me that they (DOA) couldn't do anything about the mites but that their job was to follow behind the exterminators to make sure they were using the correct chemicals and the correct amount of chemicals within the safety guidelines.
After he told me this, my friends show him around my house and Ken S. took pictures. (My friend was video taping his investigation). The three men from YA were waiting outside until he finished. Ken S. then told my friends that they could tell YA’s representatives they could come in to do their investigation. One man said he was the sales and advertising director, one man was the man that sprayed my home and the other man didn't identify himself, but I suspect he was James, the man I spoke to when I called YA to complain about the oily residue.
The man that sprayed the oily pesticide told the Ken S. while they were outside talking, that he didn't spray all over my walls and mirrors yet everyone could see where it had literally dripped from my wall mirrors, hutch glass, and furniture, and could clearly see it all over my home. After YA’s representatives looked around my home, the sales and advertising director came to me and offered to pay to have everything cleaned but didn't say anything to me about my injuries or that they were sorry I fell. He could barely look me in the eyes. I never agreed to anything because my friends and I were still talking to Ken S. about doing swab tests.
I asked Ken S. and YA’s representatives to do swab tests, in fact I insisted they do tests, because YA’s representatives had told Ken S., while they were outside, that I did it and I wanted to prove that I didn't do it, and to prove without a doubt that YA’s representative was responsible. Ken S. and YA’s representatives met outside my home, Ken S. came back in and told me that he and YA could do their tests on Monday, 12/3/12. YA’s representatives never did come back inside but rather just left without speaking to me further.
On 12/3/12, my friends and I waited at my house but no one showed up. I called Ken S. and Ken S. told me they weren't going to do the tests ever (I assumed he meant the DOA and YA) and that he wasn’t going to help me. He told me to call his boss Mark M. I called Mark M. and Mark M. told me that they were at YA’s place of business (when they were suppose to be at my house) and saw the label of the chemical YA’s representative said he used, and that YA’s representative did what he was suppose to do to kill roaches, and said to me “that it had no oily residue.”
I don't have nor have I ever had roaches. My friends and neighbors will attest to it in a court of law. Ken S. didn't see any in my home. I made a point of getting him to look around because YA’s representative had indicated "roaches" on the receipt he left for me after he sprayed. When Ken S. looked at the receipt, he couldn't understand why YA’s representative would put roaches on the invoice when I didn't have roaches. In addition, he wasn't suppose to be treating my home for roaches when he told me I had mites.
I couldn't believe what I was hearing! Mark M. had even changed the tone in his voice while talking to me. He wasn't the nice man I had first spoken to. He sounded agitated. While talking to Mark M. about why they had cancelled the swab tests and were pulling out of their investigation, he said "we don't know who was in your home after the YA’s representative left." I said "why would I destroy my beautiful home?" He said he didn't care, they weren't going to help me and they weren't going to continue with their investigation.
The Department of Agriculture stated to me that "their job was to go behind exterminators to ensure they were using the correct chemicals and the correct amount of it." Why would the DOA suddenly end their investigation just because YA showed him "a label" of a chemical that was "supposedly" used? Why wouldn't the DOA further their investigation by taking swab tests of the chemical that was all over my home to prove that YA’s representative used the correct chemical and the correct amount? Why did the DOA just take YA’s word for it? These questions need to be answered before a judge in a court of law. If the DOA is suppose to help people like me who are abused and whose property is damaged by a reputable company, why aren’t they doing their job? After all, we as tax payers are paying their salaries. What happened to the term innocent until proven guilty? YA has accused me of spraying an oily substance all over my home and belongings, accusing me of doing something I didn’t do.
Another question comes to mind. What are they trying to cover up and why is the DOA in on it?
The court needs to determine if in fact the label shown to the DOA is the correct label of the chemical used in my home. Evidence shows a clear oily substance all over my house. If YA’s representative is innocent, then why didn't YA and the DOA continue their investigation to prove his innocence?
This case can not be closed or dismissed on mere hear-say, nor can it be closed or dismissed based on an assumption that YA’s representative used the correct chemical. If the YA pest control company has nothing to hide, then why wouldn't they do a swab test to prove that their representative used the correct chemical?
If in fact I allegedly put the oily pesticide all over my home as YA and the DOA accuse me of doing, then why wouldn't the DOA do a swab test to prove my guilt? Additionally, why would I purposely destroy my home when my home was up for sale and I was going to make an $11,000.00 profit? Even if I didn't like living with those bugs, I could have found a better exterminator to get rid of them. Why would I purposely destroy beautiful furniture, furniture that was made with cotton, and "all of my belongings"? It doesn’t makes sense. YA could have shown the DOA any label they wanted and this doesn't prove that their representative didn't spray something oily all over the inside of my home. Why would the DOA suddenly pull out of their investigation without checking into all of these facts? I suspect fail play but who am I to accuse anyone of fail play without investigating all of the facts?
Now my entire home is destroyed and everything in my home is covered in this oily pesticide. My life has been turned upside down, I'm in severe pain, can't sit and can barely walk and can't stay in my own home. The sale of my home has been delayed for an indefinite period of time. I am unable to pay my mortgage because I have to pay all of my unexpected medical bills first. My doctor has ordered me to take physical therapy which will incur more medical bills.
I find it highly suspicious that all of a sudden the DOA decided not to do swab tests and didn't bother to complete their investigation. If the DOA's job is to go behind pest control companies to make sure they use the correct pesticides and the correct amounts, why did the DOA stop its investigation? If the DOA is "here to help people" like me, why didn't they do what they said they would do?
YA Pest and Termite Control Company never did take pictures but I've got video which was taken at the time they and the DOA were going through my home. This video is clear evidence that the DOA, as well as YA’s representatives saw the oily substance all over my home. The video also has sound and everything discussed in my home was recorded as evidence.
I have a very strong case against YA Termite and Pest Control Company, its representatives and the Department of Agriculture's representatives. I will not rest until I see justice served. Furthermore, I seek retribution for the damage done to the inside of my home, my medical bills to date and in the future, as well as my pain, suffering and mental anguish. YA and the DOA may think that I am just going to go away and not do anything in this matter, but I still have faith in our justice system.
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