Victim Location 60645
Total money lost $3,066.83
Type of a scam Home Improvement
I found "Chicago’s Finest Handymen & Contractors" on both Angie’s List and Yelp when I needed contractor work for two of the bathrooms in my home. Upon receiving a reasonable estimate from Mr. Ted *** who managed the company, my husband and I decided to move forward with hiring him. As I was a furloughed Federal worker due to the shutdown, I had plenty of time to direct Mr. *** as to how to complete the project to my liking. He asked for half of the estimate up front as payment- $1,600- and requested we send it to him via Chase QuickPay so I did just that. Upon the removal of my old shower unit on the first day, he asked that I again Chase QuickPay him $1,380 for the replacement shower unit that we had agreed to. His Chase QuickPay wasn’t accepting money at the time (odd) so he told me to send the $1,380 to his "office manager" Francesca. Francesca worked for Chicago’s Finest Handymen & Contractors, so she would move forward with ordering the shower from TileRedi. At that point I thought the situation was fishy, but I did it anyways. That was on January 6th, the last time he was in my home. He removed one shower down to the baserock, and cut a huge hole in my ceiling to deal with a water leak from the other shower. He has not been to my home since. Every day for the past month he has told me he was coming, and then never shows up. With this frustration I asked if I could even just come pick up the shower unit he had ordered and I’d find someone else to install it. With that, he has gone off the grid. After doing a large amount of research and formal background checks on Mr. Sparrow, I see that the "office building" he used as his business address is in fact a post box at a UPS store, and that he has no office. I see that he has four DUIs, a felony, a repossessed car, and numerous lawsuits against him for fraud across three counties in Illinois. I see that his company is not licensed, bonded, or insured like he said it was, and that he actually terminated his LLC in early 2018. His so-called business has no employees, and his "office manager" Francesca is actually his live-in girlfriend. I have found three other families who have been scammed by him in the past month. Collectively, he has stolen about $20,000 from these four contracts. He has told each of us different stories- one, he was in an accident and hurt his back and now can’t work. Another, he went to prison and is retired. Another, he was stuck in jail for a few days because of being behind on child support. None of these claims are true. We have asked him to refund all of the money he’s stolen but he now claims he is not in possession of it, and that the money has been spent. I have half of a working bathroom, a room that WAS a bathroom and is now a concrete cubicle, and a huge leaking hole in my ceiling. And I am out over $3,000.