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Chester Resident Sentenced To Four To Nine Years On Home Improvement Fraud, Embezzlement And False Pretenses

CONTACT: Cathy Norman, Assistant Attorney General, (802) 828-5526

October 2, 2009:

Vermont Attorney General William H. Sorrell announced today that on September 30, 2009, David Rounds was sentenced in Windsor District Court to four to nine years imprisonment as a result of his convictions on three counts of felony Home Improvement Fraud, one felony count of Embezzlement, one felony count of False Pretenses, and one misdemeanor count of False Pretenses. “Hopefully this jail term will be a wakeup call to other contractors in the state who take money from Vermont property owners and then fail to deliver on their promises,” said Attorney General Sorrell.

A Windsor County jury found Rounds guilty on one count of felony Home Improvement Fraud, one count of felony False Pretenses and one count of misdemeanor False Pretenses after a two day trial in January 2009. On September 30, Rounds pled guilty to two additional charges of felony Home Improvement Fraud and one count of felony Embezzlement. The State dismissed four other counts of felony Home Improvement Fraud in consideration for Rounds’ guilty pleas on the other charges. In addition, Rounds was ordered to pay restitution totaling $90,926.50 to thirteen different victims.

According to evidence presented at trial and affidavits filed with the Court, between September 2004 and November 2007 Rounds entered into contracts for home improvement work at eight different residences throughout Windsor County. During this time period, Rounds engaged in a pattern of conduct which included: receiving deposit payments from his victims, then failing to order required materials or perform the home improvements that were contracted for; knowingly promising to fulfill contractual terms that he knew could not be completed, in whole or in part; and fraudulently converting money received by virtue of his employment for his own use.

Attorney General Sorrell cautions consumers: “Take steps to protect yourselves. Contact our Consumer Assistance Program and check our website to find out if the contractor you are thinking of using has been convicted of home improvement fraud or has had complaints filed against him. File a complaint with us so that others can be protected.”

To contact the Consumer Assistance Program call (800) 649-2424 (toll free in Vermont only) or (802) 656-3183 (Chittenden County). To find out whether a contractor has been convicted of activities related to home improvement fraud or has had civil claims brought by the State of Vermont, check the registry on the Attorney General’s website at: www.atg.state.vt.us and click on “Home Improvement Fraud.” To file a complaint electronically, go to www.atg.state.vt.us and click on “Consumer Assistance Program.” Send a written complaint to the Consumer Assistance Program, 103B Morrill Hall, University of Vermont, Burlington, VT 05405.

  Website consulting provided by The National Association of Attorneys General.