Insurance Fraud NEWS
Contractor gambles at casinos while alleged victims seek repay
May 21, 2019, Jacksonville, FL
After the I-TEAM spotted Jacksonville contractor and insurance fraud suspect Wyatt Green betting thousands of dollars at a poker room while out of jail on bond, the State Attorney's Office has had his bond conditions changed to keep him from betting or gambling while his case moves forward through the court system.
Green, the owner of Storm Restoration Specialists, LLC or Storm RS, was arrested last month by insurance fraud investigators with Florida CFO Jimmy Patronis' office and charged with felony forgery, fraud and grand theft.
Investigators say Green and his staff members forged homeowners' signatures and used stamps purchased online with the names of mortgage companies in order to fraudulently endorse insurance check to pocket the money. Green is accused of taking thousands of dollars meant to pay for customers' repairs, only the work wasn't completed. Homeowners, including hurricane victims, tell the I-TEAM Green and Storm RS didn't finish the work their insurance companies paid for.
Caught on camera at the poker table
Following Green's arrest last month on fraud, forgery and grand theft charges, and his negotiated bond that kept him out of jail, the I-TEAM uncovered Green was captured on camera multiple times at a poker room putting thousands of dollars on the line.
"Wyatt up 13 hundred," can be heard on one of the videos.
On one night following his arrest, Green is seen wearing a black hat and white shirt taking part in a poker game that had a $2,000 minimum buy-in. At one point in the night, Green had a stack of nearly $10,000 worth of chips.
Customers who Green is accused of defrauding fear they may never get their money back, and it angers them to see him betting thousands of dollars in a Jacksonville poker room.
"That's infuriating," said Kristen Wright, one of the homeowners named as a victim in court documents in Green's case. "You know, he's telling everyone he's already settled and he's already paid and he hasn't. He's told everybody he's trying to make it right, and clearly he's not. He's still out for his own benefit and doing his thing."
Wright said Green owes her more than $29,000 for renovations to her home that Green never finished.
Linda, another customer of Storm RS, contacted the I-TEAM after a lien was placed on her property following business dealings with Green's company.
According to insurance documents, Green charged Linda's insurance company $22,500 to put a roof on her three bedroom home in Lakeland. What she didn't know was that Green doesn't have a roofing license, so Storm RS subcontracted with Central Florida Roofing to do the job for $7,374.91, leaving Green and his company with about $15,000.
"About two weeks ago, we received a certified letter stating that we owe the roofing company (Central Florida Roofing) $7,374.91 because they hadn't been paid." said Linda.
The I-TEAM spoke to a spokesperson with Central Florida Roofing. We're told since Storm RS hasn't paid the company for the work, it put a lien on Linda's property. But that's not the only homeowner stuck with a Storm RS bill. The spokesperson said Green still owes nearly $7,300 fo another roof Storm RS hired them to do. A lien was placed on that home, too.
"I think it's horrible. I wish there was a way that we could stop that from happening, but as a homeowner, I thought I was doing everything that I could to make sure that everything was ok," said Linda. "I think it's extremely dishonest."
With Green and his company accused of leaving customers with Storm RS' bills, homeowners alleging Green and his company didn't finish the work they were paid to do, and Green out on bond during his felony insurance fraud investigation, Florida CFO Jimmy Patronis said seeing Green on video betting thousands of dollars on poker doesn't sit well with him.
Patronis told the I-TEAM, "I don't have a financial balance sheet of what he looks like but it's concerning to me, as it is to anybody who is sitting out there in limbo and he's got work that he's supposed to be completing. At the same time the work is not being completed. What is essentially going to pay the work with, and is that my money on the table?"
I-TEAM alerts prosecutors to Green's poker bets
When the I-TEAM first spotted Green betting thousands on poker weeks ago, we contacted the State Attorney's Office to find out if it