Elderly Yakima Couple Falls Victim To Roofing Scam, Loses Thousands
YAKIMA, Wash.- An elderly couple in Yakima steps forward saying they were scammed out of thousands of dollars. Earlier this month Kennewick police arrested two men, 22-year-old Ricky Mitchell and 45-year-old Marc Martinelli for targeting elderly people in a roofing scam, and the Yakima couple says they're the same two men that ripped them off.
Late October Shirley and Leo Schmidt decided to hire what they thought were a couple of nice, genuine guys to fix their leaky roof. The business flyer they were given said all the work was guaranteed.
"But then we noticed they had no ladders, hose or water," Shirley Schmidt told us. Instead the scammers were using Shirley and Leo's equipment to do the job. Before long they say the project turned into their own worst nightmare.
Shirley showed KNDO the final bill for the work. It was a whopping $6,460 dollars. Unfortunatley, the eldery couple fell for the scam, wrote the men a check, and never saw them again.
Leo says their roof used to be a light gray color, and now it's bright green. Instead of a clear sealant to stop the leaking, the scammers cut corners and used green paint. The green paint caused such a mess on the white overhang, it had to be repainted. Leo showed KNDO the paint mess left all over their property; on the garage door, the fence, and all over their shrubs in the front yard.
The worst part, Shirley and Leo say their roof leaks more now than it ever has before.