Contractor pleads guilty to construction fraud charges

CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - Clayton Duty is guilty as charged. Wednesday, the contractor admitted to taking money for jobs, using the money to feed his drug addiction, and skipping out on the work. He's a contractor we've consistently followed.

Duty told the judge about his two year addiction to heroin. He talked about how he wants to change his life. The judge offered him intensive rehab -- or prison. The 25 year old signed up for the adult drug court in exchange for his guilty plea.

Clayton Duty pled guilty in Chesterfield to two counts of construction fraud, grand larceny and possession of heroin. His attorney tells us Duty is looking at more than 43 years in prison if he ever tests positive for drugs and fails to complete the county's adult drug court program.

"Unlike most folks you see on the news, traditionally where they are in fact scammers where they come and take your money and leave, drive way scams, roofing scams, general home improvement scams, this simply is not the case with Mr. Duty," said Steve Armstrong, Attorney for Clayton Duty. "He was a good kid, prior military experience, good family background unfortunately drugs are a scourge young folks find themselves victims to."

Duty admitted to taking $3100 from a man in the 13700 block of Brandy Crest Drive. He had agreed to replace the man's heat pump in September.

He also admitted to taking $2300 from a woman in the 33 hundred block of Shallow Ford Court. He was hired to replace her heat pump in October. His heroin addiction was so bad, Duty told the court when police arrested him, they found syringes that had heroin residue. Armstrong says the drug program terms will have duty working at least 30 hours a week.

"He will be continuing to maintain fulltime employment, payback any of the restitution owed to the victims and hopefully take advantage of this opportunity to get on with his life.

Duty says he's not a bad guy, but he did a bad things including, something else he admitted to: stealing $465 worth of blu-ray movies from Target to get money for drugs. He says he never intended to defraud anyone and he's ready to seek drug treatment and get his life back on track.

Duty is free on a $5,000 bond. Charges are pending in Richmond. A Henrico case was recently resolved with Duty promising to pay restitution.

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