Police investigation looks into customer complaints at Fleming Furniture
After receiving dozens of customer complaints, police are looking into Fleming Furniture. We’ve been following the story for months.
Customers, including a Local 6 employee, haven’t received prepaid furniture or reimbursements. Fleming Furniture customer Debbie Via calls her experience a nightmare.
"I’m at desperate measures. I would like to get my sofa. That’s all I want," she said.
Via moved into this home a little over a year ago and ordered a sofa from Fleming in August of 2014, and she still doesn’t have it.
"I just work so hard. I’m single, and money isn’t that easy to come by," Via said.
Assistant McCracken County Attorney Todd Jones says Via is among dozens customers at Fleming and its sister store Ashley Furniture who are having the same problems.
"The gravity and breath of it is unique and disturbing," Jones said.
He’s now working with Paducah police detectives to investigate the store and customers’ individual cases. He says they’re trying to find out if these are civil cases involving a struggling company that can’t afford to reimburse customers or if it goes deeper.
"If you take someone’s money for furniture and don’t intend to give it to them, then that can be a crime," Jones said.
Signs outside may say the store is closing, but the store is still taking customer’s furniture orders.
Jones advises people not to order furniture unless it’s on the floor. He also asks anyone who has had a problem to contact police.
"That’s important. Without a police report and investigation, a prosecutor can’t do much," Jones said.
Via said Friday afternoon she would join dozens of others reaching out to the county attorney’s office and law enforcement for help.
Jones says in some cases police have been able to help customers resolve the issues. Fleming Furniture owner Dan Kelley did not return WPSD’s calls.
The store’s "retirement sale" has officially turned into a "going out of business sale."
Kelley owns Fleming Furniture and the Paducah Ashley Furniture Homestore. Ashley Furniture Industries on Friday sent us a statement that says, in part:
"This furniture store has not been an Ashley Furniture HomeStore since September 15, 2015. Dan Kelley has notified Ashley Furniture Industries, Inc. that the Ashley Furniture HomeStore signage on this store is in the process of being removed."
The company says it is willing to sell furniture to Kelley’s company to fulfill any customer orders received by the store before September 2015.