Westmoreland roofing claims investigated
By Jennifer Reeger, TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Thursday, February 2, 2012
Westmoreland County detectives have begun an investigation into a Texas-based roofing company that allegedly failed to pay for building materials, leaving 17 homeowners with liens against their properties.
Detectives Will Brown and Frank Galilei are investigating Prime Roofing Systems of Waxahachie, Texas, which had work crews in the area to replace roofs damaged when a hailstorm and tornado ripped through the county on March 23.
Brown said they are looking into the theft of funds from property owners who paid Prime Roofing to replace their roofs but now have mechanics’ liens placed on their property by building material supplier ABC Supply Co. Inc.
The Wisconsin-based supplier, which has an office in New Castle, claims in court documents that Prime Roofing failed to pay for nearly $65,000 in building materials it delivered to the 17 properties for work done last summer. The liens range in value from nearly $2,200 to almost $11,000.
Property owners said they cannot sell or refinance their homes until the bills are paid and the liens are lifted.
Galilei took a complaint from one homeowner about a month ago, but detectives weren’t aware of the extent of the problem until Greensburg attorney Charles Dangelo, who is representing a homeowner, contacted them Tuesday.
Brown and Galilei said they have spoken with some of the property owners and are trying to reach the rest to obtain contracts, cancelled checks and other paperwork.
“They’re happy to hear from us,” Brown said. “A lot of times people don’t know exactly where to turn.”
Homeowner Rebecca Ruble, who faces a $3,710 lien on her Hempfield home, said she was happy to get a call from detectives Wednesday morning.
“It’s like Turkey Hill putting a lien on my freezer because Foodland didn’t pay their ice cream bill,” she said of the situation. “Hopefully they’ll look at everything, and they’ll find something, and they’ll be able to help.”
Detectives are looking to find anyone with information about Prime Roofing or Steven Kyle Hunt, the man listed as the registered owner with the state attorney general’s office.
Brown said the detectives are working with the AG’s office.
“They can do the civil, and we can do the criminal,” he said.
Dangelo was pleased that the detectives are involved.
“It shows that there’s more to this case than what affects my client,” he said.
Affected property owners and anyone else with information is asked to call county detectives at 724-830-3287.