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Bats in $2,500-a-Month Apt. Forced Us to Leave and Get Rabies Shots, Women Say in Suit

Posted Aug 24, 2011 6:43 PM CDT
By Martha Neil

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Two women who say they paid $36,100 up-front to rent a $2,500-a-month apartment in New York City for a year that turned out to be infested by bats are suing to get their money back ... plus $1 million in damages.

When they spotted the first bat, flying around one of their rooms, a couple of days after moving in, they called the building superintendent, who removed it, Dimitra Mallarios, 56, and Irene Katehis, 23, say in their New York Supreme Court suit. But when they spotted a second bat in less than a week they moved out, reports the New York Post.

Marks on one tenant's arm which, the suit says a doctor diagnosed as "caused by a bat while Katehis was asleep in the premises" led to rabies shots for both women. Now, they allege, they are having trouble sleeping.

Having paid the $36,100 up-front (the total included a security deposit and broker's fee), the two can't afford to rent another apartment and are living with a relative, the two women say in the suit.

In addition to a return of the $36,100, they are seeking $1 million in damages for emotional distress.

The landlord declined to comment. The super, Sabri Shabiu, said he had removed one bat from the plaintiffs' home but contended the women exaggerated the problem. "No infestation. No way!" he told the newspaper.

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