Ohio AG sues Germantown fence company; customer losses estimated over $100K

Separate local fence business with similar name battling through reduced sales.

DAYTON — A Germantown fencing contractor is accused of taking more than $100,000 from customers for fences that were never built.

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost on Tuesday filed a lawsuit in Montgomery County Common Pleas Court against Dixie Fence South LLC and its owner Daryl Robert Fraley for alleged violations of state consumer protection laws.

“Defendants accepted monetary deposits from consumers for the purchase of home improvement goods and services, including fence installation and repairs, and failed to deliver those goods and provide the services,” the lawsuit stated.

In some cases the business refused to refund deposits or payments; began work but did not complete it; or did not fix shoddy and substandard work, according to the lawsuit.

No attorney is on file for Daryl Fraley. The Dayton Daily News left a message seeking comment on the business line.

A separate fencing contractor with a similar name, Dixie Fence LLC based in Harrison Twp., has a disclaimer in red on its website alerting customers they are not affiliated with Dixie Fence South.

“We are not the same company,” said owner Jaron Fraley, who said he has been negatively affected by undeserved poor reviews and misdirected calls from angry customers aimed at the other business, which is operated by his relative.

“I have noticed a decline in my sales,” he said. “We can get to somebody within the next week,” he added, because his business right now is “short on jobs.”

Jaron Fraley said the Better Business Bureau has been a bright spot in helping him maintain his good reputation. Dixie Fence LLC has an A+ rating with the BBB. When complaints were made, the BBB investigated and assigned them to the correct business, he said.

Dixie Fence South LLC — registered on Jan. 10, 2020, with the Ohio Secretary of State — is not BBB accredited and has an F rating with the organization. The BBB website also notes pending government action against the contractor.

Yost in December sued another Dayton-area fencing company, B&R Fence & More LLC and its owner, Robert Wood, who were accused of taking $12,500 from homeowners who made payments for fences that were never constructed.

The lawsuit filed in Montgomery County also alleged multiple violations of the Consumer Sales Practices Act and the Home Solicitation Sales Act.

The Dayton Daily News was unable to reach Wood for comment. A phone number for the business has been disconnected and a social media page for the fencing contractor indicates the business is permanently closed. No attorney of record was listed for the company nor Wood.

A civil summons was issued Jan. 24 that gave Wood 28 days to answer the complaint.

A civil summons issued Tuesday gave Fraley 28 days to answer the complaint or else a judge could render a default judgment against them in their cases, court records show.

Both lawsuits asks for a declaratory judgment and for the defendants to pay restitution plus damages to affected consumers, to be barred from business until restitution is paid and to cover court costs. It also asks the court to assess a civil penalty of up to $25,000 for each violation.

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