Bed bugs spotted at the Thompson Center

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Bed bugs crawl around in a container on display during the 2nd National Bed Bug Conference in 2011. (Jewel Samad, AFP/Getty Images)

5:20 p.m. CDT, March 20, 2014

Bed bugs have been detected at the Thompson Center, the Loop building that acts as the seat of state government in Chicago.

The critters were discovered in offices used by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation by a pest management business over the weekend, according to a letter sent to agency employees obtained by the Tribune. A spokeswoman for the agency said the contaminated area has been treated, but sterilization of paper files is ongoing.

Bed bugs feed on the blood of humans and animals, and their bites can cause itchy skin welts. They do not transmit diseases but are easily spread.

Department spokeswoman Susan Hofer said there is no threat to the public because the infected area is located in a part of the building that is restricted to state employees. Hofer said the bugs were traced to a worker who brought the contamination from home. Another worker noticed the bugs late last week, Hofer said.

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Bed bugs spotted at the Thompson Center

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