A man who owned a Brown County roofing business was found guilty of six counts of home improvement fraud after a jury trial this week.
A jury convicted Randy L. Madewell, 50, Danbury, Texas, of three felony counts and three misdemeanor counts of home improvement fraud. He could face a maximum of more than 10 years in prison when he is sentenced next month, deputy prosecutor Joe Villanueva said.
Madewell was arrested in January 2012 after six Greenwood residents told police he had taken their money and promised to fix their roofs but never did the work. In total, police said Madwell took more than $37,000 from the residents, according to court records.
Homeowners often paid Madewell out of money they had received from their insurance companies to fix storm damage and then had to pay at least part of the cost to have the repairs done since Madewell never did the work, Villanueva said. Residents paid Madewell between $4,000 and $7,600 each then were unable to contact him after the check cleared, court records said.
Prosecutors also showed during this week’s three-day trial that Madewell had spent the money on personal expenses.
Madewell’s business bank accounts had more than 100 non-business purchases, including clothing, fishing gear, a fishing boat and a motorcycle. That money should have been spent to buy the materials needed to make repairs to people’s homes, Villanueva said.
“That was the crux of why the jury chose to believe it wasn’t just a guy who got in over his head a little bit,” Villanueva said.
Madewell’s attorney, Matt Solomon, was not available Friday.
The jury found Madewell guilty of the three felony counts because the homeowners were older than 60, which makes the charge a felony instead of a misdemeanor, Villanueva said.
He also faces similar charges in other central Indiana counties, Villanueva said.