May 3, 2019. By Gabrielle Russon
A family from Louisiana claimed they were bitten by bedbugs during their stay at Disney’s All-Star Movies Resort last year. They are now suing in federal court for more than $75,000. (Walt Disney Parks and Resorts)
Louisiana couple is suing Disney, claiming they took home some unwanted souvenirs — bedbugs — that infested their home and traumatized their autistic son during their stay at the All-Star Movies Resort last year.
Ashley and Robert LaCombe filed the lawsuit that was transferred into Orlando federal court this week. The suit seeks more than $75,000 in damages.
After they returned to their home in a parish north of New Orleans, they realized they had been bitten by “numerous” bedbugs, the lawsuit said.
The bedbugs bit them hundreds of times, leaving scars, said their New Orleans attorney Jennifer Greene.
The lawsuit says they contacted Disney, and employees confirmed there were bedbugs in their hotel, a value resort near the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex.
“The bedbugs from the Disney Hotel traveled with the LaCombes on their luggage, clothing, and personal belongings, infesting their home in Louisiana,” the lawsuit said.
The LaCombes accused Disney of not disclosing there was a problem with bedbugs and not keeping the hotel free of infestations, according to the lawsuit first filed last year in U.S. District Court’s eastern Louisiana division.
The couple said they hired an exterminator to kill the bugs at their home, which forced them to find another place to stay. They threw away infected furniture and belongings and the couple also had to take time off work to deal with the situation. The stress also hurt their 5-year-old child, who has autism, the lawsuit said.
“The LaCombes experienced and continue to experience additional mental anguish and stress as they cannot enjoy their home,” according to the lawsuit. “Family members and friends cannot visit due to the risk of acquiring the bedbug infestation.”
The bugs are still a problem and returned even after the home has been fumigated, Greene said.
“It’s unfortunate for a family to deal with after going to the happiest place on Earth,” Greene said.