Police warn of asphalt paving scam in Bellingham

THE BELLINGHAM HERALDJuly 2, 2014 

BELLINGHAM - A shady asphalt paving company scammed a Bellingham restaurant out of several thousand dollars last month.

Police don't want others to fall for the same trick.

A man in charge of the paving business - some of his trucks were labeled "I-5 Paving" - offered to do several thousand dollars worth of parking lot repairs June 16 for the Soy House at 400 W. Holly St., the Bellingham Police Department wrote in a public notice this week. The company had leftover asphalt from another project, the man in charge said, so it had to be done right away.

They made a verbal agreement, and a roller and several trucks were called in to work on the lot, police said.

Two hours later the man asked for a check. He wanted it made out directly to him. He promised to return next week to finish the work. But the company never came back, and the shoddy job was worth far less than what the restaurant paid - "not even close," according to Bellingham police.

Another business on the south side of Bellingham reported the same company made a similar offer. This time, however, the man specified the leftover asphalt came from a job he'd just wrapped up at the Soy House.

At least one truck had Oregon license plates. Police haven't been able to verify if the business is legitimate.

If you have any tips or if you've been victimized, call Detective Dan Kelsh at 360-778-8690.

Reach Caleb Hutton at 360-715-2276 or caleb.hutton@bellinghamherald.com. Read his Dispatcher Blog at bellinghamherald.com/dispatcher-blog or follow him on Twitter at @bhamcrime.

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