UPDATE @ 9:35 p.m.: Some victims of American Memorial Monuments and former owner Darren Boykin said they are not confident they will ever see their money again from the state attorney general’s lawsuit against the former business and owner seeking customer refunds.
“Just because you have a lawsuit against somebody does not mean you are getting any money,” Terina Turner told News Center 7’s Monica Castro on Tuesday night.
Turner paid more than $1,000 to the Miami Twp. business for a headstone. She said the business claimed it didn’t have records of her payments.
Turner now is a few weeks from receiving a headstone for her late husband.
Another victim, Douglass Steinbruegg, said, “the wheels of justice turn slowly but at least something’s being done.”
He also paid American Memorial Monuments and Boykin more than $1,000 for headstones for himself and his wife.
Like Turner, Steinbruegg was able to get headstones from Richards Monuments in Franklin.
He said Boykin should never be allowed to own a business again.
“I just don’t think he’s trustworthy,” Steinbruegg said.
Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost is seeking refunds of $50,000 from a former Miami Twp. gravestone business and its owner accused of ripping off customers.
The consumer protection lawsuit alleges that American Memorial Monuments and former owner Darren Boykin accepted payments for gravestones but never fulfilled the orders.
“Grieving families paid this business thousands of dollars to memorialize their loved ones but all they got in return was more grief,” Yost stated in a news release.
The lawsuit filed in Montgomery County Common Pleas Court stems from 22 complaints submitted to Yost’s Consumer Protection Section since October 2017. The complaints blame the business for financial losses totaling $50,000.
Many of the customers accuse the business of failing to deliver their gravestones. In some cases, customers received their orders but said the gravestones differed from their chosen designs. Others said their gravestones were not permitted at their selected cemeteries, despite the business assuring them otherwise.
The lawsuit claims that Boykin violated Ohio’s Consumer Sales Practices Act by misleading customers and failing to provide refunds.
The filing requests an order requiring Boykin to reimburse affected customers and pay civil penalties. It also seeks an injunction prohibiting Boykin from running a business in Ohio for five years.
Consumers who suspect an unfair or deceptive business practice should contact the Ohio Attorney General's Office at 800-282-0515 or www.OhioAttorneyGeneral.gov.
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