Largo police detectives spent six months investigating the owner of Randy's Pianos after two dozen customers came forward alleging he sold their pianos and pocketed the profits.
Moving forced Lisa Williams to sell her Schimmel baby grand piano, valued at $50,000. Its beautiful craftsmanship and a signed, personal message from the piano maker made it a tough decision.
"Especially if they're passed down from a parent or grandparent and, you know, they become part of the family," said Williams.
Williams decided to sell through Randy's Pianos, located at 5047 Ulmerton Rd., in Largo.
Williams says the owner, Randall Sheets, promised to find the perfect buyer and the right price.
"I shouldn't worry about getting ahold of him for a long time because it would take forever to sell and when I look back now I realize he just didn't want me checking up on the piano while he sold it."
Williams never saw a dime from the sale.
Economic crimes detectives started their investigation into Sheets after he filed for bankruptcy in January and subsequently closed his business.
According to Largo police, Sheets victimized 24 clients after taking in 30 expensive pianos on consignment. They say he sold them and pocketed all of the profit, totaling $253,070.
Williams says she never noticed any red flags when dealing with Sheets' and picked Randy's Pianos after looking at four local consignment shops.
"He just seemed the most trustworthy and gave me the best deal of them all, which ultimately was the worst deal," said Williams.
Insurance helped Williams cover the financial hit but police say that isn't the case for all of the victims.
Police tell ABC Action News, there may be more victims out there. Anyone with additional information is asked to call 727-587-6730.
Sheets was booked into the Pinellas County Jail Monday. He faces charges including grand theft, scheme to defraud and theft from persons 65 years of age or older.
No one at his Treasure Island home was available for comment on the case.