HVAC man dupes another elderly customer
SHERWOOD (KATV) -
We have done numerous news reports on a HVAC contractor targeting the elderly, the disabled...even the blind.
Tonight we hear from another victim...one who is elderly and hard of hearing.
Back in September Jeremy Rupert told us he was out of the HVAC business and no longer taking money up front for jobs.
If that were true...we wouldn't have heard from 84 year-old David Everett this week.
Everett says Rupert had been servicing his heat and air units for years...first as an apprentice for his father-in-law and later as owner of the business.
"At one time he was an honest worker,” says Everett. “And then suddenly he went bad and started cheating people and that sort of thing. So...I kinda...it sounds to me like drugs are involved with him."
A divorce decree agreed to this month supports that suspicion.
It states that if Rupert "...completes a drug rehabilitation program and produces 6 months of clean drug tests, he may petition the court for visitation with the minor children."
On April 2nd Rupert told Everett that his A.C. unit needed to be replaced. He gave Rupert money up front towards a new unit...and hasn't heard from him since.
Later, a reputable HVAC contractor reconnected a wire and told Everett his A.C. unit worked fine.
"I called his father-in-law and the father-in-law said that his daughter had divorced him,” says Everett. “One of the reasons was that she found out that he had been cheating people out of money."
So how much did Mr. Everett pay Jeremy Rupert? Just over $2,800.00. Everett doesn't expect to ever see that money again. If that changes, we'll let you know.
Rupert is facing felony charges related to his business dealings. He is next due in court May 7th.
Air date: April 25th, 2018