SHREVEPORT, La. -- A Shreveport man says he's falling deeper in debt as his rental home falls apart but his landlord hasn't responded. Ricardo Wray told KTBS 3 he lost his job because of COVID-19 and acknowledged being behind on his rent. But his living situation has only gotten worse since the February ice storm, and other than an eviction notice, he hasn't heard from his landlord either by phone or text.
The family has had issues with gas supply, and water leaks including a major break that flooded the bottom floor of the home and impacted several low-lying neighbors a block away.
"We haven't been able to take a hot shower," said Wray. "None of my kids. Since it's leaking so much, it can't get into the hot water tank. I have to boil water for them to wash."
Wray said they've all suffered health problems, possibly due to mold, and he shared video with KTBS, showing insects crawling on his daughter's sheets. But between what he owes in rent, the cost of a contractor he had to hire on his own, and the Airbnb the family has had to use, it's all still adding up.
"It's hurting me as a father that I can't get them in a better situation because of everything that's been going on," said Wray. "I'm trying my best to work [in Lake Charles] as much as possible. But I have to come back whenever things like this happen."
During an interview with KTBS, Wray again tried to call his landlord but was told she was out of the office. Left with few other options, he's planning to take legal action..
KTBS 3 also reached out to the landlord through the company that owns the home, 91 Houses, LLC. and were told someone who was authorized to speak to the media would be in touch. As of Sunday night, they have not responded.