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Update: Customers confront furniture shop owner for first time since getting locked out

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UPDATE 5/24/18 - Jim White was on his way out of bankruptcy court Tuesday and trying to avoid us and our camera at all costs.

Customers don’t feel he should be able to discharge his debt through bankruptcy.

If White gets his way, he'll get his debt wiped away through chapter seven bankruptcy, meaning he won't have to pay back the customers he's accused of stiffing.

“He knew he was closing the store,” customer Teresa Valentine said. “He knew he had no intention of giving us our furniture and stuff.”

Several customers, including Gwendolyn Randle, got the chance to confront White during the court hearing.

She said, “I was hoping to accomplish that he would tell me he would make things okay like he said he was.”

It’s a fair request.

Remember, we have owner Jim White on the record, on video, making that very promise to his customers.

“We are taking caring of everybody,” he said.  “We are taking care of everybody.”

Problem is, he did not take care of Niyo Moise, but he sure did take his $3500 cash.

“I bought them on March 20,” he said. “That's like, less than a month before they closed.”

Natasha Richardson got lucky.

She got her furniture less than 24 hours before Home Outlet suddenly shut its doors for good, but only after taking matters into her own hands. 

“I went around the floor, seen my stuff, went and got me a Uhaul and moved my stuff out that same day,” she said. “So he will lie and tell you your stuff ain't in that store, but every piece of my items I paid for was in that store.”

Now, customers are demanding to know what happened to the rest of the furniture that was leftover in the showroom.

Tuesday, in front of a bankruptcy trustee and under oath, White testified he owed his former landlord back rent and she was the one who hired the movers to confiscate the furniture.

Niyo though, telling the In Your Corner team he recognized several of the movers we featured on In Your Corner. He says they are hired help from Home Outlet Furniture.

He said, “Two different times I bought furniture from [Jim White] and those are exactly the same two [movers] that delivers [furniture] to your place.”

  • These days, Jim White is not saying a word, only referring us to his attorney.
  • The bankruptcy trustee continuing White's bankruptcy hearing until next month.

OKLAHOMA CITY - Our crafty plan was to distract Sandra Williams and her wife, Tamara, and it worked!

While we were interviewing them inside their home, outside a very special delivery was pulling up with furniture to surprise the family.

Mathis Brothers heard about their situation and wanted to help, blessing them with a new couch, coffee table and side tables.

What we were most excited about was the new mattress and box springs for 10-year-old Caitlyn.

“I don't know how I can ever thank you for that,” step-mom Sandra, said.

Remember, Caitlyn had been sleeping on the floor after Home Outlet Furniture ripped off Sandra and dozens more customers.

For weeks, the owner's been hiding out from both customers and us.

We know owner, Jim White, owes a bunch of people money, including the U.S. Government.

Right now, he's trying to get his debt discharged through bankruptcy court and even lists Sandra and other customers as creditors.

The place is cleaned out.

There is nothing left inside and no sign of owner Jim White.

We still want to talk to him.

His bankruptcy hearing is scheduled for later this month.

We plan to be there.

Sandra didn't pay Home Outlet with a credit card, so recouping her cash is a long shot, which makes this special delivery from Mathis Brothers and Mike's Delivery all the more sweeter.

Oklahoma's Chief of the Attorney General's Public Protection Unit Julie Bays tells the In Your Corner team her team is actively pursing its investigation into White.

Bays is asking for anyone with a complaints against Home Outlet Furniture, Furniture for Less or Furniture Max to come forward and file a complaint with her office.

Customers listed as creditors will get the chance to attend White's bankruptcy hearing next month.

That hearing is scheduled for 10 a.m. May 22 in Room 113 at 215 Dean A McGee Ave. 

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