POLICE: Owner of Jarvis Heating and Cooling arrested for exploiting the elderly
According to an arrest warrant, the first incident happened on Nov. 1. Police say an elderly woman paid James Michael Jarvis, Jr., the owner of Jarvis Heating and Cooling LLC, $1,250 for a furnace installation -- but Jarvis Jr. never provided the materials or performed the work. As a result, the elderly woman had to endure the winter months without heat.
Police say they were able to match the signature on the check endorsement with the signature on Jarvis Jr.'s license. Additionally, police say the elderly woman was able to show officers a photo of Jarvis Jr. that matched what they saw in previous Metro Corrections booking photos.
According to the arrest warrant, Jarvis Jr. has been accused in a similar incident involving an 81-year-old, visually impaired victim who cares for a spouse with Alzheimer's disease.
Police say Jarvis Jr. tried to obtain money from a third, long-time customer, but was not successful.
He was arrested Monday night and charged with theft by deception and knowingly exploiting an adult.
Police say what's tricky is, Jarvis Heating and Cooling has been around since the 70's and until now, has had a good reputation.
Police say that's because Jarvis Jr.'s dad used to run the company until he took it over.
"For the last 30 to 40 years, this has been a legitimate company," Detective Jeremy Smith told WDRB.
Det. Smith, who works in LMPD's Crimes Against Seniors Unit, believes Jarvis Jr. is using that good name to take advantage of loyal customers.
"(A) long time customer hadn't used him in a few years, called him to come do some work at one of her properties during the middle of winter, needed a furnace. He was paid two-thousand-something dollars to put in a furnace, cashed that check immediately and for several months the victim had called him and called him, didn't bring any materials, didn't do any work," explained Smith.
Wearing his Jarvis Heating and Cooling shirt, he pleaded 'not guilty' Tuesday morning to theft by deception and knowingly exploiting an adult.
Jarvis Heating and Cooling is listed at an address on Manslick Road in Fairdale but when a WDRB News crew went there, they discovered the door locked and no one answered the number that was left for customers.
"I don't believe this is still an active company. I think because of IRS reasons and other reasons that the company has gone under," said Det. Smith.
Jarvis Heating and Cooling is not a BBB accredited business.
Sources there say Jarvis Jr.'s HVAC license was terminated in September of last year.
However, the BBB hasn't had any complaints filed against his company.
Charlie Mattingly with BBB of Louisville says if anyone feels they were scammed by the company, they should file a report.
Detective Smith says he believes there could be more victims.
"I know of two for sure that we've got open cases on right now, one other attempted and I suspect there are many more out there," he told WDRB.
Officials also confirm Jarvis Jr. has drug trafficking and possession of drug paraphernalia charges pending in Bullitt County.
If you think you're victim of one of the crimes, you're asked to call 574-LMPD.
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