A Chesterton resident appears to have been the victim of a home-improvement
scam, Chesterton Police said.
police, last week a 70-year-old resident reported that, on Dec. 9, a man
approached her while she was outside and told her that he was going to be
re-surfacing a nearby church’s parking lot but had overestimated the amount
of material needed. The man then said that he would use the extra material
on her driveway for a “reasonable rate”—$1,000—in what he pitched as a
“win-win scenario for both parties.”
agreed, left the house to run errands, and on returning “was taken aback by
the appearance of her driveway,” police said. “It had been covered by what
appeared to be a layer of fine gravel mixed with cinders, possibly mixed
with some temporary binder.”
The woman was
also taken aback when the man came to collect. “Due to the ‘difficult
nature’ of the work,” the price had gone up to $2,000, the woman advised.
The woman told
the man she could only afford to pay $1,000 now but would give him a second
check post-dated to Jan. 3. The man agreed and a few days later the woman
found that the check had been cashed.
The woman did
ask the man, before he left with her money, why the driveway had not been
sealed. “The man told her that it would be best if the surface was exposed
throughout the winter to allow it to ‘settle and breathe,’” and promised to
return in the spring to seal-coat it.
When the woman’s
grandson heard about the transaction, he told her that she’d been scammed,
to cancel the second check, and to close that checking account because now
the man had her routing and account numbers.
does not appear as though $2,000 worth of quality work was performed,”