A Riverton contractor has been ordered to spend up to 15 years in prison for collecting thousands of dollars for kitchen cabinets that were never delivered.
Steven Jay Sizemore, 31, was sentenced earlier this week to a concurrent one- to-15 year prison sentence after pleading guilty to three second-degree and two third-degree felony counts of communications fraud.
Third District Judge Randall Skanchy ordered Sizemore to pay victims $117,000 but left the total restitution amount open in case others come forward.
Investigators for the state Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing have identified 21 victims with losses. About a dozen showed up at the sentencing hearing to testify about how Sizemore’s actions as the owner of Backwoods Cabinetry caused them financial hardship and stress in their marriages.
“Some of Sizemore’s victims lived without a functioning kitchen for weeks and months, and at least two families were stuck doing their dishes in the bathroom tub,” said Assistant Attorney General Jake Taylor. “The prison sentence Mr. Sizemore received was a good outcome to what had been a three-year crime wave.”
Sizemore started advertising under his name or Backwoods Cabinetry on KSL.com and BuildWatch in 2009, state officials say. After receiving numerous complaints, investigators learned that Sizemore would take prepayments for cabinets but never deliver or install them. He also failed to disclose he was not a licensed contractor, had filed for bankruptcy and had not paid back previous customers.
Sizemore was charged and arrested in June 2011, but investigators discovered he was still taking money and failing to do the work as late as May of this year. Investigators have found seven new victims and hope that others will come forward.
Allison Hansen and two of her neighbors lost money to Sizemore. “After we paid him, he started giving us every story in the book as to why he couldn’t come to our house. His truck broke down, his grandmother died,” said Hansen. “It wasn’t until we found his mugshot online that we realized he had already been arrested for defrauding other homeowners.”
To file a complaint
O Those with information in this case may file a complaint with the Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing. > bit.ly/complaintfile