Man arrested on fraud charges against Hurricane Florence victim

    Kenneth Forbes (Onslow County Sheriff's Office photo)

    A Selma man has been arrested and is facing charges for defrauding a homeowner for hurricane-related repairs that were not performed.

    The Onslow County Sheriff's Office reports Kenneth Lee Forbes, 58, of Hwy. 70 in Selma, was arrested on Feb. 8. He was taken before the magistrate and charged with obtain property by false pretense, a felony. He was transported to the Onslow County Detention Center under a $5,000 secured bond.

    Officials said on Jan. 18, patrol deputies responded to Capps Street in Sneads Ferry. A suspect said he hired a man to do work on his home after Hurricane Florence but it was never done. The victim said he gave Forbes the money to purchase materials. The victim said the materials were never delivered and no repairs were name. None of the money was returned either.

    Onslow County Sheriff Hans Miller and staff want to remind citizens to use caution when hiring someone to do work for you. There are a few things you can do to protect yourself:

    -- Always get the proposal in writing

    -- Never pay more than one-third of the cost of a job up-front

    -- Resist any attempt to force you to make a decision on the spot

    -- Do not pay in cash

    -- Use a contractor or reputable company. Make sure they are in compliance with local and state regulations for contractors, such as having general liability and worker’s compensation insurance

    -- Ask for references

    Anyone with information about this incident may contact Onslow County Sheriff’s Office at (910) 455-3113, Det. Michael Curlee at (910) 989-4074;, or Crime Stoppers at (910) 938-3273. Please refer to case 2019000933 when calling.

    Crime Stoppers offers cash reward of up to $2,500 for information that is deemed of value or assistance to law enforcement. Information can also be anonymously texted via Text-A-Tip by typing TIP4CSJAX and your message to 274637 (CRIMES). Callers to Crime Stoppers may remain anonymous and never have to reveal their identity.

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