Man hired to renovate home ends up locking owners out and moving in, police say
CINCINNATI (WXIX/Gray News) - Police in Ohio say a man hired to do renovations at a home had other plans and decided to move into the property he was supposed to fix.
Wayne Colwell Jr., 52, was indicted earlier this month on counts that include theft and unauthorized use of property, according to the Colerain Police Department.
Dennis Harvey told WXIX that he hired Colwell to fix up his home as he planned to sell it, but he ended up not providing any services despite being paid.
According to Harvey, Colwell changed the locks on the home and even denied him from accessing the house, blocking him from checking on the progress of the so-called renovations.
Police said they were contacted regarding the situation and found that Colwell did not provide any of the services requested after having been paid $43,000 and two vehicles.
Harvey said Colwell was recommended to him by his uncle after he had done roofing work last year.
However, investigators said they found that Colwell was conducting business under potentially fraudulent business names.
Officers also discovered that Colwell not only denied the homeowners access to their home, but he took it upon himself to change the locks and move into the house without permission.
Harvey said Colwell was making excuses as to why he and his wife couldn’t inspect the house and when they would show up at the property he wouldn’t let them in.
Colwell was eventually taken into police custody.
Additionally, the 52-year-old is facing a charge of possessing a weapon illegally.
The investigation by the Colerain Township Police Department is ongoing and anyone with further information or believes they may be a victim is urged to call 513-321-COPS.
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