Tree Scam Follow-Up - NBC12 - Richmond, VA News

12 ON YOUR SIDE ALERT: Tree Scam Follow-Up

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RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) -

Recently, we told you about an elderly Henrico man that says he was duped out of thousands dollars after hiring an out of town tree service company. Another tree service company saw our story and stepped in to help, for free.

A tree service company hard at work was music to the ears of 85-year old Floyd Boothe. You may remember his story. He called 12 after hiring Smith's Tree and Firewood Service in Bealton, Virginia. The company has an "F" rating with the BBB. It didn't respond to our phone calls or the BBB's when trying to get some answers.

Mr. Boothe admits when hiring the company, he let his guard down. He says he paid the workers up front. After they got the cash, he says they skipped town without completing the work. "All this stuff I knew but this guy was so slick and smooth and you never think it is going to happen to you and it can very easily," Boothe told us.

After seeing what happening to Mr. Boothe, many of you wanted to help. Some of you sent emails and many of you picked up the phone and called our Call 12 Volunteers. We got the message to Mr. Boothe and got him the help he needed. "I seen it on the news and I didn't think it was fair that somebody does a job half way and leaves him hanging," says Michael Hunter with M&D Tree Service. "Tree services are getting a bad name and not all of us are bad," he tells us.

Hunter says he had to step in to help. He warns, if someone comes knocking at your door offering tree service, use caution. "If they can't prove insurance don't let them do the job and if they ask for money up front, tell them to go home," Hunter says.

Mr. Boothe lost about 3-thousand dollars. M&D did the work for free, one act of kindness led to another. "The guys that are helping me, I was going to pay them but they volunteered," Hunter says. "It is not a small thing these guys are doing for me and I appreciate that," Boothe told us. Mr. Boothe says lesson learned, he'll do his research and shut the door when someone shows up offering services.

M&D says it will donate the fire wood collected from Mr. Boothe's yard. If you'd like to research a company or file a complaint contact the BBB.

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