Furniture store customers still waiting for orders to be filledPosted: Updated:
PHOENIX - A furniture store owner made 3 On Your Side a big promise, but did he come through?
At the center of the controversy is Jamie Michaels who owns a Scottsdale furniture store called Exotic Home.
He promised to return $2700 to a customer, because after paying for a sofa a year earlier that customer never received the sofa he ordered.
Now 3 On Your Side has learned that there are a lot more customers out there who say they're in the same boat.
"I can't believe the store is all closed," Dawn Clemett said.
Clemett is talking about Exotic Home, a Scottsdale furniture store that abruptly closed recently, but the store owner didn't lock the doors without first taking $53,000 from Clemett and her husband.
"It's disappointing to say the least that it's empty, so," Clemett said,
Michaels, the owner of Exotic Home, was profiled last month in a 3 On Your Side investigation.
At that time Michaels promised 3 On Your Side that he would return $2700 to the customer who claimed he paid Michaels for a sofa, but after a year, he never received the sofa he ordered.
Turns out, Michaels never did return the money like he promised.
After that report aired, Clemett wrote to 3 On Your Side with a similar experience, except she handed over $53,000 Michaels.
After nearly a year, Clemett said she received absolutely nothing for her money and now Exotic Home is shut down.
Clemett said Michaels didn't close though without this little comment.
"He actually told me that my money helped him get through some tough times," Clemett said.
Dawn is not alone. In fact, 3 On Your Side has received complaint after complaint from customers who told 3TV they gave Michaels and his business Exotic Home a lot of money for furniture but in the end they got nothing.
"He basically ripped us off," Scott Luckey said.
Luckey is another customer who can't believe Exotic Home is closed.
He ordered furniture and paid $3200 to Michaels in advance, but he has nothing to show for his money.
"I guess he fled before someone came with a Louisville slugger to extract whatever deposit they could out of his hyde," Luckey said.
Luckey is in the process of battling his bank in hopes he can get his money returned.
Clemett though doesn't have a shot because most of the money she handed over has cleared her bank.
In the meantime, more customers kept arriving to find out the status of their furniture order, only to discover Exotic Home locked and empty and the store owner gone with their money.
Late Monday afternoon, Michales finally got a hold of 3 On Your Side and in a statement he blames the economy.
The statement reads "We at Exotic Home have worked hard to please all of our customers over the years. As a small company we could not weather this last downturn alone soour company was purchased. This larger entitywill allow us to satisfy our customer's orders in a more timely fashion.We are disappointedthat we had to close our expensive Scottsdale Road shop.We will miss Scottsdale Rd!Please contact me directly through our website exotichome.netor . All e-mails will be answered within a week. We are going to do the right thing. We are sending letters out to customers to keep them updated on their order."
3 On Your Side will be following this to see if those other orders actually come in.