More Complaints Even, Criminal Charges Surface About Local Roofer

By Zaneta Lowe  - bio | e-mail

"I got several estimates from local home improvement companies to other contactors as well, and then I decided on Nelson Roofing", says Olivia Hankins.

It's a decision Hankins says she now regrets.

She says after paying Nelson Roofing and Repair $4600 of her insurance money, from a storm damage claim, the company left her with a leaky roof and shingles that don't match.

Since we first spoke with Mrs. Hankins, other local residents have contacted the ConsumerWatch team with similar complaints.

One woman says she paid the same company more than $2000 to do some work on her home, and they still havent returned to finish the job.

But after a bit more digging, we discover even more details about the owner of the company, Lawrence Nelson.

On January 21st this year, Nelson was arrested and charged with theft of service, that's when someone claims they paid for a service that wasn't delivered.

He faces the same charge from a case in 2008, it's still pending.

His rap sheet includes other charges of theft and forgery that date back to the 1980s.

Including in 2003 when Lawrence plead guilty to three counts of first-degree forgery.

A judge sentenced him to nearly $400 in restitution and fines, five years probation and 200 hours of community service.

Nelson is also being sued in a civil case. The plantiff claims she hired Nelson Roofing and Repair to replace her roof, but has since had problems of leaking, flooding and other damage.

She's suing for the cost of replacing the roof and other damages for a total of more than $7,000.  A judge has not ruled in the case.

We spoke with Nelson by phone, but he refused to comment and referred us to his attorney.

While no longer working in that capacity, the attorney who represented Nelson last year, in the 2008 theft of service case says while the case is still pending, it was a legitimate dispute over a product order that's on its way to being resolved.