OKLAHOMA CITY- In early 2012, we ran a series of stories on the company Extreme Shelters. The company sold and installed storm shelters.
Several customers contacted us after becoming frustrated with delays getting their shelters installed.
Many were wanting their money back. Some said the company would no longer return their calls.
Daniel Finch, the owner of Extreme Shelters, told us early in our investigation that he planned to pay everyone back.
His number was then disconnected.
In the following days and weeks, more customers came forward. Some said they had paid as much as $4,000 up front for a shelter they never received.
One of those customers, James Hodges, actually filed a police report, which resulted in the Cleveland County District Attorney’s Office filing a single count of home repair fraud against Finch.
Now, a decision by a Cleveland County judge has some of Extreme Shelters’ former customers upset.
In early 2012, we tried to get Finch to talk to NewsChannel 4. He would never go on camera; instead, he told us by phone he intended to pay back all of the money.
It’s a promise he’s made good on and one that led a Cleveland County judge to dismiss the charge against him.
In a previous interview, Hodges, said, “The hassle we had to go through to get him to stand up to his word, I don’t think it was right, but at least he did it.”
Hodges was referring to the refund he received after paying for a storm shelter that was never installed.
After charges were filed against Daniel Finch, James Hodges received four money orders totaling $4,000.
For months, the case against Finch was tied up with one delay after another. Court records show part of the reason was to allow Mr. Finch time to finish repaying restitution.
In May, the final decision came. Judge Steve Stice dismissed the case against Daniel Finch.
It’s a decision James Hodges says was frustrating but one he has to accept.
Finch scheduled an interview with NewsChannel 4 earlier this month.
He said he wanted people to know he’s not a bad guy. The interview was set for July 11th.
The day before the interview, Finch emailed; saying his attorney was requesting an agreement that all stories involving his name and the name “Extreme Shelters” be removed from KFOR’s website before he would speak with us.
We declined that request and said we would be ready to meet at the location of his choosing on July 11th.
The day of our scheduled meeting, Finch called from a private number and canceled that interview.
The attorney general’s office was also looking into the accusations against Finch.
It says according to its investigation records, Mr. Finch has paid back everyone who filed a claim against him and his company.
The Cleveland County District Attorney’s Office said it felt there was enough evidence to charge Mr. Finch or else it would not have done so.
However, it says the judge’s decision is what stands and there are no plans to further pursue this case against Daniel Finch or Extreme Shelters.