Contractor admits spending elderly customer's money, arrested
BATON ROUGE - A Mississippi contractor was arrested after he admitted spending over $2,000 an elderly person gave him to complete repairs.
According to arrest records, on April 20, a deputy with the East Baton Rouge Sheriff's Office was informed of the case.
The victim, who is over 60 years old, explained that on December 8, 2016, the victim and Justin Etheridge, 42, of McComb, Mississippi entered a construction agreement, according to arrest records.
The victim said Etheridge was given $2,800 to complete window repairs and had not installed any windows, according to arrest records.
When the victim asked Etheridge about the uncompleted repairs and money, Etheridge said he spent the money.
The victim also said Etheridge removed and never returned kitchen cabinets that he was reportedly attempting to rebuild, according to arrest records.
The deputy then contacted Etheridge, who was on scene and advised him of his rights. Etheridge admitted to spending the $2,800 the victim gave him for windows and other items for repairs. Etheridge said the money was not spent on materials for the victim's residence.
The deputy arranged for Etheridge to meet at EBRSO Headquarters on April 24 with other documents and invoices showing where the money was spent.
However, Etheridge failed to show for the meeting and a warrant was issued for his arrest on April 25.
On May 5, Etheridge was subsequently arrested and booked on charges of contractors misapplication of payments prohibited and theft of assets from an aged person.
Etheridge bond was set at $15,000. He was released on the same day.
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