A couple Friday sued their former landlord for ending their lease prior to Christmas last year in what the couple alleges was a discriminatory response to the woman’s pregnancy.

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Michael and Karen Pitts brought the lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court against Financial Management Co. and actress Frieda Rentie. They allege housing discrimination and both intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress. They seek unspecified damages.

Rentie could not be immediately reached.

The plaintiffs moved into a Culver City building owned and operated by the 83-year-old Rentie and Financial Management in mid-2009 and were paying $1,900 a month in rent at the end of their time there, the suit states. Rentie became pregnant in July 2015, the suit states, prompting other residents to warn her to keep her situation a secret or risk being kicked out by Rentie, the suit states.

After Rentie found out in December 2015 that Karen Pitts was pregnant, the actress told them they had 60 days to leave, terminating their lease, the suit alleges.

Karen Pitts issued a prepared statement about the lawsuit.

“It was so stressful to have to look for a new apartment around Christmas time last year,” she said. “We were away visiting family for several weeks and all I could think about was, `Where are we going to be living when I deliver our baby in a couple of months?’ “

Michael Pitts said the couple previously got along with Rentie.

“Only when she found out we were pregnant with our second child before Christmas last year did our landlord turn against us and send us packing,” he said.

Karen Pitts suffered emotional distress from the events and gave birth to her baby in March via caesarian section, approximately two months prior to the baby’s expected due date, the suit states.

Rentie had a role in the 1972 film “The Poseidon Adventure.”

— City News Service

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