Single mom living in roach-infested apartment on Long Island

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HEMPSTEAD, Long Island – A single mother of three small children said she’s living in a nightmare at her cockroach-infested apartment on Long Island.

Desperate after being denied help for months, Monica Gaines reached out to PIX11 News. She warned us Tuesday before we entered her apartment on Terrace Avenue in the village of Hempstead that the conditions are practically uninhabitable.

As soon as we walked inside, we could feel the cockroaches at our feet. They were everywhere – and Gaines lives in the home with her three daughters, ages 10, 9 and 8.

The bugs were crawling on the walls. They were inside the kitchen cabinets, behind her dishes, even in the fridge.

“I have to put cotton in my babies’ ears so the bugs don't get in there,” Gaines said. “I can't sleep. I can't live like this.”

She said it’s been like this for months. She’s complained to management at the Bedell Terrace apartments, but she said they’ve done nothing to help.

The property was acquired in 2009 by Omni New York LLC and was renovated in 2011 using more than $20 million from the New York State Housing Finance Agency and Nassau County, the real estate agency said on its website.

Management there told PIX11 News they have exterminated in the past and will send an extermination crew to Gaines' home Tuesday.

A spokesperson for Reliant Realty, which manages the building, released this statement to PIX11:

"We appreciate the frustration you are sensing. We always care for our tenants' needs and never want to see a family living like that. In this case we have treated the apartment on March and have since tried to return several times, but we're turned away. In general extermination services are offer weekly and this tenant has not signed up or availed her apartment of the service."

PIX11 News reached out to Hempstead’s Mayor Wayne Hall, whose office is sending an inspector right away to look into the conditions Gaines and her children are living in.

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