Harvey really had it in for Cindy Hitt's Cypress neighborhood. More than three feet of water from the nearby creek got into her home. As the floodwaters retreated, contractors flooded in, and Cindy thought she found a good one, a Christian one.
"His company was Jeremiah 17.7 Remodeling. He said he spoke at conferences. So I felt comfortable, so I guess that's how con artists are. They make you feel comfortable,“ she says.
Comfortable enough to sign a contract and fork over a one-third deposit -- $13,000. He was supposed to begin work on February 19 and work five days a week and be done by March 30, but guess what happened?
"I didn't hear from him. Nobody showed up that day. He said he was sending a drywall person out. Nobody showed. He didn't respond to texts and calls for three weeks," she says.
Eventually he responded, claiming he had a stroke. She decided to pull out because she learned he didn't have the proper licenses. He accused her of breaking the contract, but then agreed to pay her back. She has a series of texts from him where he claims he had his identity stolen and attempted suicide. He promised to return the money, said he'd moved out of the area for a job, and then he stopped responding.
We went to the address listed on the contract. It's a rental home and neighbors told us they hadn’t seen anybody for weeks.
We tried calling and calling. No answer.
Yet we found him still listed online.
Cindy had to spend $50,000 of her own money to buy new appliances and materials, but then volunteers from a group called Reach Global helped the Air Force veteran rebuild. That's helped restore her faith in humanity. Well, not all of it.
"He didn't do anything at all. He didn't buy anything for me, he didn’t do anything. He just took my deposit," she says.