Additional charges filed against local contractor accused of not completing work

A local contractor has been repeatedly accused of taking thousands of dollars for jobs he never completed. 11 Investigates has been looking into John McDonald, and his business, Brothers All Around, for months now and mentioned the Allegheny County District Attorney’s Office was working on its own investigation. Those charges have officially been filed.

“Finally somebody was listening,” said Jamie Cropper.

>> Attorney of contractor facing criminal charges for incomplete work claims he fell on hard times

Another family with a nightmare of a story. The Croppers were supposed to move into their dream home in October 2023. That’s at least what their contractor, John McDonald, told them.

Last Summer, Jamie Cropper and her husband hired McDonald and his company, Brothers All Around, and wrote him two checks that totaled nearly $90,000. It’s now February and a pile of materials has been sitting outside in the elements for the last six months.

Those materials for their log cabin-style home were delivered even before the property was even properly cleared. No foundation was poured at that time.

There wasn’t even a driveway yet. This is just one case in the hands of the Allegheny County District Attorney’s office now.

“He’s basically preying on people for their money,” said Cropper.

The Allegheny County District Attorney’s Office compiled complaints from Cropper plus five other alleged victims.

>> Contractor facing charges in 2 counties for incomplete work

“You would think that there might be one or two other people, but to hear there’s probably at least 15-20 other people involved in some way or another is pretty crazy,” said Cropper.

So far, the DA’s office has filed more than a dozen charges against McDonald, ranging from Home Improvement Fraud to Deceptive or Fraudulent Business Practices to Theft of Services.

The criminal complaint states McDonald deposited checks from four families, totaling around $280,000.

All the alleged victims say very little to no work was done.

“It’s a lot of money, and I would love to know where the money is going because apparently it’s all gone already too,” said Cropper.

Just last week, Channel 11 spoke with Brian Sigel, who filed charges against McDonald in Donora, Washington County.

He says he did research on McDonald and is out more than $40,000. Cropper says she did her research too, and pointed out that she even looked up McDonald on the Attorney General’s website which showed he renewed his registration even after complaints were filed with the AG’s office.

“We didn’t have to become a victim,” said Cropper. “They’ve known about him for more than a year, a year and a half, maybe even two years at this point. So there’s absolutely no reason why all of us had to be in this position.”

All the people with cases against McDonald are planning on getting together soon to discuss next steps.

A spokesperson with the PA Office of the Attorney General says the Home Improvement Consumer Protection Act does not give their office the ability to revoke or deny a contractor’s registration.  Instead, the AG’s office only ensures contractors are in compliance with registration requirements.

“Only a court can revoke a registration based on some request for injunctive relief due to violations of the law,” said Office of Pennsylvania Attorney General Michelle A. Henry Press Secretary Brett Hambright.

He added the law requires contractors to respond to certain questions and if the contractor answers those questions, they’re given the registration.

“While we do not discuss active investigations or their existence, we can say we have received consumer complaints and encourage anyone harmed by this contractor to contact us and file a complaint,” said Hambright.

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