Adarien Jackson, a Maryland mother, was awarded $225,000 in a jury trial this week, after her family allegedly got bed bugs from a pair of wooden-frame beds she bought for her sons from a furniture retailer.
On Thursday, a jury ordered Calidad Furniture & Linen Inc., the store that sold Jackson a pair of wood-frame beds, to pay Jackson and her sons $225,000 for the ordeal. It is one of the largest bedbug liability judgments in the country.
It sounds like the two beds were delivered soon after the family bought the home from Jackson’s mother. “Within weeks,” skin reactions began for one of the two twin boys. The second twin began reacting a few months later, and bed bugs were discovered in October.
That the case went to court at all was unusual. According to the Baltimore Sun, most bed bug cases fade away with settlements rather than going to court.
And not only did the case go to a jury trial, but the jury also awarded $75,000 more than the plaintiff was seeking.
A jury of six women deliberated for 30 minutes before finding in favor of Jackson.
Jackson had only sought $150,000 in damages. That an Anne Arundel County jury raised the stakes is rare, Whitney said. County juries are known for being conservative with damage awards, he said.
Jackson’s award is the second-largest known to [Jackson’s attorney Daniel Whitney] or Tom Campbell, an Alabama attorney who takes a large number of bedbug cases. In what is thought to be one of the largest judgments of bedbug liability, two siblings who sued a Motel 6 in Chicago were awarded $382,000 in 2002.
The generous award suggests the six-woman jury was especially sympathetic to the plaintiff’s story.