Worst Kansas City Contractors of 2009
Matco Construction | Shawnee, Kan.
Matco Construction owner Matthew J. Hulsey was convicted in August of felony theft for accepting money to build a pool and pool house that he never finished.
Shawnee homeowner Tim Cowick paid Hulsey $70,000, but what he got was a large hole, foundation footings and subcontractors' liens.
Nancie Fargo, an investigator for the Johnson County District Attorney, says Hulsey didn't have a contractor's license, which he needed to obtain building permits. His conviction resulted in an alert on the company's record.
Cowick filed a civil suit against Hulsey for breach of contract and fraud.
In October, Hulsey was sentenced to a year in jail and two years' probation, and ordered to fully repay Cowick.
"I never had any intention of taking the money and not completing the work," Hulsey told Angie's List Magazine, adding that Cowick's money went to keep other projects afloat.
Heartland Home Service | Independence, Kan.
Johnson County Judge James Davis issued a warrant in October for Heartland Home Service owner Steven Koziol after he failed to appear in court.
Jail officials in Jackson County say Koziol didn't appear because he was jailed and awaiting trial there for an incest charge.
Koziol, who Johnson County officials say did not have a contractor's license, was arrested in April on a charge of felony theft after Lenexa homeowners Katherine and Toan Nguyen paid him $14,000 to remodel a basement that was allegedly never finished.
Court documents state that Koziol has previous convictions, including theft, deceptive commercial practices and aggravated sodomy, a crime that involved a 7-year-old.
"I was in total disbelief that I brought someone like that into the neighborhood - my neighbor runs a day care," Katherine Nguyen says. Koziol's convictions resulted in an alert on his record.
At press time, Koziol remained jailed in Jackson County. His company's phone number was disconnected and his Johnson County public defender declined comment.
— reporting by Joshua Palmer