The veteran of eight bedbug-centered lawsuits since September seeking $100,000 to $3.5 million, a Maryland attorney has earned himself a reputation as the bedbug lawyer, the Washington Post reports. Some are calling Daniel Whitney a “bloodsucker,” but he calls that “nonsense. These people need help.” Victims mostly seek damages from building management over what they call negligence amid a bedbug resurgence.
The creatures were almost gone from the US in the 1950s, but since the 1990s, they’ve come crawling back, and now they’re showing up everywhere from college dorms to Google’s offices to the poshest hotels. A North Carolina congressman has hosted a Congressional Bed Bug Forum. Whitney’s cases cite “embarrassment, mental and emotional distress,” “fear,” and “anxiety.” But so far, the bugs seem “unstoppable,” says an entomologist.