5 On Your Side

5 On Your Side Confronts Contractor Over Botched Bathroom Job

Posted December 6, 2006 10:53 p.m. EST

— Blowing kisses and waving, contractor Jim Rupp appeared to not have a care in the world when he was caught on camera. That's perhaps surprising, considering the heartache Regina Monson said he's caused her.

“It makes me cry,” said Monson as she showed 5 on Your Side her bathroom.

In March, Monson hired Rupp and his business All Your Wishes Construction to remodel her bathroom. She paid him $9,000 of the $10,500 total, but Monson said Rupp hasn't done any work since late June.

“We tried to work with him," Monson said. "He has children he needed to babysit. We offered to keep the children. We offered to let him come at night and work. We offered to let him come on the weekends. We said, 'You can come at midnight.'"

What's worse, Rupp never got any of the required permits or inspections for the work, so inspectors said what’s been done has to be ripped out and redone.

“I'm just sick about the whole thing. Just sick,” Monson said.

After Rupp didn't return repeated calls, 5 On Your Side went to his Apex home.

“We want to give you the opportunity to tell us what’s going on,” said reporter Monica Laliberte.

In response, Rupp replied, “My attorney said, 'Don’t say a word.'”

“Why would you take $9000 from someone and not do the work? That’s a lot of money,” asked Laliberte.

“Okay, I'll slow this down now…on advice of my attorney, don't talk to you,” answered Rupp, slowly stressing each syllable while looking straight into the camera.

When asked why he didn’t have his attorney call us, he simply waved goodbye.
And while Rupp seemed to think the whole thing was funny, Monson was near tears.

“I don't even know if there are words to say how hurt and how devastated I have been by the way he's treated us,” Monson said. “I really trusted him and he really let us down."

Rupp has a history of taking money without doing the work. He has a felony conviction in Chatham County after he took more than $3,100 from someone, didn't do the work, and then wrote a refund check out of a closed account.

Rupp was also convicted in Wake County on a similar charge involving more than $7,000. And a third case involves a Cary customer who says Rupp took money and didn't do the work. That case was recently postponed because Rupp wants the court to appoint an attorney.