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Unlicensed Contractor Will Go to Prison: Jeffrey Woodhouse Targeted Elderly Customers Door-to-DoorSalem-News.com
Last week, Linn County Circuit Court Judge Carol R. Bispham sentenced Jeffrey Woodhouse to a new 13 months in prison for theft and working as an unlicensed contractor in the Sweet Home case.
(SALEM) - A construction con man will do prison time for stealing money from an elderly Sweet Home couple who took out a home loan to make a down payment on property improvements.
The couple paid Jeffrey Woodhouse $4,400 to replace siding and paint trim - work he never even started. In fact, the day after the scam, Woodhouse entered prison on similar charges involving other victims.
Last week, Linn County Circuit Court Judge Carol R. Bispham sentenced Jeffrey Woodhouse to a new 13 months in prison for theft and working as an unlicensed contractor in the Sweet Home case. The judge also ordered him to pay back the couple's money.
The Linn County case was one of many involving the 42-year-old Vancouver man who used fictitious business names and bogus contractor license numbers to win clients.
Legitimate contractors must be licensed through the CCB. Woodhouse was never licensed in Oregon or Washington. He typically took large deposits or full payment up front, then did little or no work. Victims describe him as charming, talkative and convincing. In making his pitch, he gave some of them calculators or other gifts.
"This just underscores the importance of contacting the CCB to see if a contractor is licensed - and to verify that the license information matches the person who is offering to work for you," Interim CCB Administrator Berri Leslie said.
"Of course, we always urge special caution if someone contacts you out of the blue - whether by phone or showing up on your doorstop," she added. "Never pay a big share of the project cost up front and always check references."
Since 2006, the CCB has received more than 30 complaints about Woodhouse. He has amassed nearly $50,000 in unpaid civil penalties, one reason the CCB sought criminal prosecution in some Oregon counties.
In addition to civil penalties, working as an unlicensed contractor is a misdemeanor crime. Woodhouse previously served more than two years in prison on Marion and Coos counties theft convictions. After his release less than a year ago, other charges caught up with him, including the Sweet Home case that will send him back to prison.
News Release from Construction Contractors Board
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