LOS ANGELES -- A visitor to Las Vegas, who claims she found a bed bug in her hotel room at the MGM Grand and hotel management was unresponsive when she complained, has hired an attorney to pursue the matter.
Stephanie Mejia of Los Angeles, whose report about the bed bug on her Facebook page went viral earlier this month and was picked up by mainstream media, has hired attorney Mike Petikyan of the YMPK Law Group in Los Angeles to represent her.
According to the YMPK Law Group website (www.ympklaw.com), "Mike Petikyan’s main areas of practice are Federal and State criminal defense and civil litigation. Mr. Petikyan graduated from Loyola Law School and was a part of the Civil Litigation Advocacy Concentration. During law school, he gained a vast amount of experience in criminal law when he clerked at the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office and Los Angeles District Attorney’s elite Major Crimes Unit.
"He created lasting relationships with prosecutors and gained valuable experience in prosecuting DUI, domestic violence, prostitution, battery and petty theft cases. Before founding YMPK Law Group, Mr. Petikyan clerked at a highly respected personal injury firm, Dewitt Algorri & Algorri, where he learned how to litigate and fight insurance companies in order to obtain maximum settlements for injured clients.
"Mr. Petikyan takes pride in actively defending his clients against overzealous prosecutors and insurance companies in both Federal and State courts. Mr. Petikyan is a member of the Los Angeles County Bar Association, the Armenian Bar Association and Consumer Attorney’s Association of Los Angeles."
Bugaboo of possible bed bug lawsuit and PR nightmare looming as Mike Petikyan services sought
Immediately after being hired, Petikyan released the following statement: "On the early morning of June 9, 2017, Stephanie Mejia, Valeria Herrera and their daughter, Hailie Navarro, drove from Los Angeles to the MGM casino and hotel for a weekend vacation. Their vacation was cut short when they were greeted by bed bugs in their hotel room.
"MGM's lack of meaningful response to this matter was very alarming, as they failed to provide my clients with another room. Additionally, MGM employees refused to provide the telephone number to their corporate office, telling my clients to find the number on the Internet. MGM officials are aware of the situation, and we are in the process of investigating this matter."
Gambling 911 emailed Petikyan for further information about the bed bug incident but has not heard back yet.
It is not yet known exactly what Mejia wants from the MGM--if she files a lawsuit, she could demand anything from reimbursement for her room to damages from the psychological trauma of finding a bed bug.
It seems unlikely, however, that she would shoulder the expense of hiring a pricey, high-powered LA attorney if she was just looking for reimbursement for a $170-a-night hotel room.
In fact, she'd be as crazy as a bed bug to do so.
Gambling 911 contacted the MGM for its reaction to Mejia's hiring an attorney and an MGM flack responded: "She has indicated that she has hired an attorney, which makes this a legal issue, and we can’t go into detail."
Mejia's Facebook post about the incident read: "You might want to think twice before staying at the MGM Las Vegas. 5 minutes after getting into our room we are greeted by this bed bug! Gross right?? What is even worse is the customer service that I receive from Katherine, the front desk supervisor.
"No options given to a customer who just paid $341 for 2 nights and when I ask for corporate's number, her response is 'I'm sure you can find it online,' how professional is that?? What a shame for a big name like the MGM. Totally ruined mine and my family's Vegas experience. Friends please share!!!!!!!!!"
After Mejia made the Facebook post, Petikyan contacted her via her Facebook page and suggested she contact him in regard to the bed bug incident.
By Tom Somach
Gambling 911 Staff Writer