Pinellas County deputies are hoping to find any additional people who may have hired a contractor accused of scamming individuals out of their money without doing the work they paid for.
On July 5, deputies arrested 38-year-old Brian Hursey. According to deputies, Hursey had been working under the business name Bay Area Pavers & Surfaces when he agreed to install brick pavers for a Dunedin homeowner. The investigation revealed that Hursey was paid more than $6,000 to perform the work he never intended to start or complete.
"He completely fooled me," said Dunedin homeowner Jacquelyn Lujan. "I just simply don't want someone else to be taken because he took a lot from me and I don't consider myself completely ignorant"
Lujan explained that the amount of money Hursey stole from her was the equivalent to five months of her teacher's pension. "That's a lot of money in anyone's check book," she said.
Hursey was arrested and charged for grand theft. He bonded out of jail on the same day he was arrested.
"I would just hate to see someone else get taken and fool somebody else like he did me," Lujan added.
According to the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation DBPR), Brian Hursey is not a licensed contractor. Two months ago someone filed a complaint to the state that Hursey was operating as "Certified General Contractor" in St. Petersburg.
Pinellas detectives suspect there could be more victims. Anyone who believes they were victimized by Hursey is asked to contact Detective Frazho of the Economic Crimes Unit at (727) 582-6611.
Before hiring a contractor, you should verify with the DBPR to make sure they are licensed and check for any disputes listed by the Better Business Bureau.