CLEVELAND — A Cleveland woman claimed she’s out tens of thousands of dollars after she said a contractor took her money and never finished the job. She called 5 On Your Side Investigators for help.
“I dropped my whole life in Atlanta and I came here with her,” said Anna Wright, 50, from Cleveland. In 2019, she found out her mom was riddled with cancer. “There was no chance of fixing it,” said Wright. “It was inevitable. It was going to happen. It was rough. Yeah.”
Wright’s mother passed away and left her a home on Cleveland’s East Side. “We actually talked about renovating the home even before we even knew this,” said Wright.
WOMAN HIRES CONTRACTOR
She hired Pierre Jones from JP Jones Contracting, LLC out of Bedford. The contract was for $27,000 to replace the kitchen, redo the bedroom and two bathrooms. Wright claimed she gave him half up front.
The crew did some work, but just weeks later the contract required additional payments. However, Wright was reluctant to pay. “I kind of was blown away because I was not happy with what was supposed to be done with the first payment,” Wright told us.
Not only that, but she said she kept track of how often Jones didn’t come to do work on her home. She showed us numerous entries in her log. “I promise I’ll be there such-and-such day,” Wright said paraphrasing what she said Jones told her. “Well, that day would come and…no show.”
LAWSUIT: 'NEXT TO NOTHING' COMPLETED
Wright told us she knew she had to get the work done and paid Jones. She claimed shortly after that second payment back in early spring that Jones “had completed next to nothing” according to a lawsuit she’s now filed. “You took money from me. Money that’s part of my life-savings that I have,” said Wright.
5 On Your Side Investigators tried numerous times showing up at his home and calling to talk with him. When Jones finally answered, he hung up on us.
“I was heartbroken for her,” said Arleesha Wilson. She’s Wright’s attorney. “As much money as she shelled out, she should have had a much greater, a much better, a much more thorough job,” said Wilson.
COMPANY WITH SAME NAME GOT $75,000+ IN PPP LOANS
During our research, we found a company named JP Jones Contracting just last May took more than $75,000 in PPP loans during the pandemic. That money went straight to an address in Bedford Heights. We wanted to find out if this is the same company as Jones’ so we knocked on the door. Despite hearing someone walking around inside the home, no one answered the door or our questions about the pandemic loans.
Wright has hired a new contractor to finish the renovations. She said that it’s now costing her nearly $30,000 on top of the $20,000+ she said she gave Jones. “You took it during a rough time,” said Wright. “It’s not only just rough for you, mister, it’s rough for me and a lot of other people.”
BEFORE HIRING ANY CONTRACTOR
If you’re hiring a contractor, Wilson said make sure you have a good address for the company. In this case, Anna Wright made a copy of the contractor’s driver’s license. Also, check to see if the business is licensed and insured.