I-TEAM: Ohio AG sues local fencing company accused of scamming area homeowners

DAYTON — Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost is suing a Miami Valley fencing company and its owner who is accused of scamming more than $100,000 from customers.

The lawsuit, filed in Montgomery County Common Pleas Court, alleges that Dixie Fence South and its owner Daryl “Rob” Fraley violated both the Ohio Consumer Sales Practices Act and the Home Solicitation Sales Act.

>> PREVIOUS COVERAGE: I-Team: Montgomery Co. prosecutor continues investigation into area fencing company accused of fraud

Fraley allegedly accepted deposits from consumers, but failed to provide goods or services or, in the few cases when they did follow up, did shoddy or incomplete work.

The lawsuit comes months after News Center 7′s I-Team began investigating accusations against Fraley and his business. The I-Team first reported on accusations against Fraley in November after a Kettering woman said his fencing company took her money.

“This guy has invented his own brand of criminal fencing,” Yost said. “Instead of dealing in stolen goods, he’s stealing money intended for goods and services he’s not providing. That is not how we do business in Ohio.”

>> RELATED: I-TEAM: Fencing contractor accused of scamming locals accused of similar actions in Tennessee

Twenty-one consumers filed complaint against the Attorney General’s Office.

Fraley’s lawyer in the civil case, Jon Paul Rion, previously confirmed Fraley is working with the Attorney General’s Office to get “20 to 30″ people their money back or build the fence they paid him for.

“This is a unique move and it’s, I think, narrowly tailored to the needs of the public and acknowledges that businesses are good for our community and that they come on hard times doesn’t necessarily mean that we need to judge them and penalize them so long as their intention is to make everything right,” Rion said in response to Yost’s lawsuit.

Rion said this is a good first step for everyone involved.

Yost’s lawsuit asks that Fraley be ordered to reimburse the more than $111,000 in loses reported by consumers. Additionally, Yost is looking to have Fraley pay civil penalties and court costs.

As News Center 7 has previously reported, the Montgomery County Prosecutor’s Office also has an open criminal investigation into Fraley and his fencing company where they said they’ve identified at least 25 victims.

I-Team will keep following the consumer investigation and update this story as we learn more.