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St. Augustine business accused of stealing

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Updated: 11/26/2013 10:32 am
ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- A St. Johns County business accused by customers of stealing thousands of dollars is closed, for now.

Action News received numerous complaints about Old City Design Center in St. Augustine.

Several homeowners showed Action News deposit checks cashed by that business months ago for home renovations, but Old City Design has yet to perform any work on their homes, the customers said.

Since Action News exposé aired Wednesday night, the shop, on U.S. 1, has closed its doors. A sign on the store's front window and a recording on Old City Design Center's voicemail both state it is in the process of reorganization and will be closed for a few days. The recording also refers questions to the phone number of a bankruptcy lawyer.

Jude Scheveling, of Vilano Beach, says Old City Design's owner, Richard Hersey, recently cashed a $28,000 deposit check. Scheveling fears he'll never see that money again.

"His bankruptcy attorney called me to let me know there would be a bankruptcy liquidation of his assets," said Scheveling. Some of those alleged victims hired lawyers, and the St. Johns County Sheriff's Office is investigating.
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