March 21, 2023


Delighting home maniacs

Sheriff’s department investigating home improvement fraud | News

Sheriff’s department investigating home improvement fraud | News

The Madison County Sheriff’s Department is investigating a report of home improvement fraud after a homeowner was cajoled into having her barn repainted.

According to a news release from Sheriff Scott Mellinger, the owner of a home on County Road 500 South was approached Tuesday by an older white man with a cane, who was driving a white pickup truck. The man told the homeowner that the barn needed painted. The homeowner agreed but did not want to have it painted by someone randomly stopping by the residence. The man didn’t relent and eventually convinced the owner to allow him to do it for $200 in labor plus the cost of paint. The man showed her a large container of Sherwin Williams paint and said that she would have a 10-year warranty.

According to the owner, five people showed up to the property and started spray painting the barn. The man left, telling the owner to pay the person in the blue shirt when the job was completed.

The work was done in two hours, and $3,800 was requested in payment. When the owner said she would pay with a check, she was told it had to be in cash or there would be an additional charge of $600. The owner left to retrieve the cash and believes she was followed.

According to Mellinger, the owner asked for a receipt and was given one claiming the business was “First Choice Maintenance.” The receipt was signed “Larry Munson.”

In the release, Mellinger said the barn was spray painted red, but it appeared no prep work was done, no primer applied and that overspray was everywhere.

“I could not locate a business named First Choice Maintenance, nor a subject named Larry Munson,” Mellinger said in the release.

Anyone with information on these individuals is asked to contact the Madison County Sheriff’s Department.