OKLAHOMA CITY – Bruce Rhoades is accused of operating a veteran’s charity scam out of his former south side thrift shop.
For years we’ve been keeping close tabs on the convicted felon.
At one time, our In Your Corner team even crossed state lines to track down Rhoades.
When we started asking the tough questions, he and his wife fled our state to set up shop in Fort Worth.
We followed them.
Rhoades locked us out and retreated inside his new thrift store.
We wanted to ask him about the raffle he was running in Oklahoma.
Several people claim he sold them raffle tickets for a house giveaway that never existed.
There was no house.
Debbie Revel purchased tickets.
“Shame on you! It’s not the money,” she said. “To steal people’s hopes and dreams, preventing them for bettering themselves, how dare you?”
It’s also alleged Rhoades stole money from a biker poker run and stiffed his employees.
Janet Wilson worked as Rhoades’ office manager.
“I never got a dime from him,” she said. “[He owed me] $3800 and some change.
For months, Rhoades hid from us.
When we finally confronted him at his new thrift shop in Texas he slipped out a door and fled, again.
This time he left his wife behind to deal with our questions.
“I wasn’t involved in the house raffle,” she said. Scott says, But you know where the money went? You just said it was used on expenses.” Rhoades’ wife says, “We used it on expenses, bills.
Scott says, “How much money was actually going to help veterans, homeless and disabled veterans? Rhoades’ wife says, “I can’t answer that. I don’t know.”
Rhoades might have been able to run from us, but he could not escape authorities.
The In Your Corner team has learned earlier this year he served six months in a Texas jail for a theft conviction.
And he was recently arrested in Oklahoma on a separate bogus check case.
He’s charged with similar crimes in Logan, Murray and Oklahoma counties.
“I hope he goes to prison for the rest of his life because we don’t need people like that walking the streets,” Revel said. “I’ve forgiven him. I had to have God help me do it.”
We’re picking up right where we left off with our investigation.
Rhoades is scheduled to be in court Friday in Logan County.
We’ll keep you posted on things.