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Jayne Voss-Robinson (Consumer-Plainfiff) vs Wayne Lorenz (General Contractor-Defendant) Where's the Justice? Consumers Beware!

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UPDATED: September 3, 2015 - by Blog Entry "Another Innocent Victim of Wayne Lorenz Files Complaint with BBB" ...

 

Updates on progress in obtaining justice fro this damage can be found in the Blog section of this newspaper.

 

A damages case caused by Wayne Lorenz was initially heard by Judge Matthew Thornhill in Small claims Court on December 10, 2014.  The following is the resulting verdict:

 

This is Justice?  Read the ruling from St. Charles County 11th Judicial Court (Small Claims Court) Judge Matthew Thornhill ... then see the entire case and YOU decide.  REMEMBER ... Judges are elected by the public to the positions they serve.

"Plaintiffs hired defendant to perform work on their home and eventually rewrote the contract to include additional tasks. Concerns over the pace of his completion and the quality of his performance prompted plaintiffs to FIRE defendant before the job was complete. They owe him the balance on the contract, plus the money he had already expended on the job but for which he had not yet been compensated. Additionally, plaintiffs slandered defeendant in media outlets. Court finds in favor of defendant on his claim of slander, assesses punitive damages and orders plaintiffs to Cease and Desist."

We, the plaintiffs immediately filed suit in the Court of Appeals: 

The following is the presentation given in the St. Charles County Court of Appeals, Judge Karl August William DeMarce presiding:

 

Work Not Completed and Damages Caused by Wayne Lorenz in:

  O'Fallon, MO 

 

Our home, located  in O'Fallon sustained storm damage sometime during the winter/spring of 2014.  Because the damage started at the northwest corner of the house not normally viewed everyday, we discovered the damage on May 19, 2014 and immediately filed a homeowners claim.

 

Around the same time, a neighbor, Janet Howard asked that we come and see the work her son-in-law did while installing a new roof on her home and dry wall in the garage area of her home. We did so and found the work to look good.  We later found out that he did not do the work himself . He assisted other experienced laborers with the jobs. She asked that we consider a bid from her son-in-law for the repair of the damages our home sustained in a basement flood event, in which we were involved in a mutual neighborhood lawsuit together,  and later after she found out about  the storm damage. Mrs. Howard denied that she made this request during the first hearing, however, we had never met Mr. Lorenz OR her daughter prior to her request and did not know he even existed. Mr's Howard introduced them both to us AFTER she made the request.  

 

We are the second person, that we know of, that  Janet Howard introduced her son-in-law to as a professional contractor.  According to Mr. Lorenz himself, Janet Howard also recommended her son-in-law to another woman for work to be completed at her home - and that woman's ordeal ended with Mr. Lorenz locked out of her home AND the woman called the police to have him removed from her property. Mr. Lorenz told Jayne and I this story himself - (REFERENCE NOT GIVEN IN COURT:  The woman was a local elementary school Special Education teacher of Mrs. Howard's grandson that occasionally lives with her.  This child is from another of Mrs. Howard's children and Mr. Lorenz children do not attend that school so it would be highly unlikely that he knew her personally. This information came from Janet Howard.)

 

From the very beginning of identifying the storm damage, we were caught up in coverage arguments with out insurance company. After it appeared that the insurance company was wrongfully denying our claim, we had a family friend - someone that served on the Fort Zumwalt Board of Education with Jayne for seven years -  who is a structural engineer by profession come out and view the damages and write a report of his findings. That is when we found out that the damage was far more substantial that just a part of a roof. We sent that report to the insurance company, and the insurance started agreeing to coverages of damages - piece by piece. We can not be responsible for the way the insurance company handled the approval process for repairs AND Mr. Lorenz was fully aware of the possible changes in the scope of work prior to signing any contract.  Please make note that this is the ONLY time THIS structural engineer  friend viewed the damages or was involved in this process. There is a second report from a structural engineer who was sent out by the insurance company at a later date that confirmed the damages Mr. Lorenz did to our roof.

 

 

Wayne Lorenz submitted a bid for work to be performed as defined in   the First Bid  dated July 15, 2014. I've also included a comparative bid from another contractor that came in $1500 less that Mr. Lorenz's bid.  .  We refused the first bid due to it's unrealistic pricing and allowed Mr. Lorenz to submit a second bid.

 

(Prior to this incident, we had no idea of what we SHOULD expect a PROFESSIONAL bid to look like … when we were given a bid from the contractor that repaired the damages caused by Mr. Lorenz and finished the job, we were shocked at the comparison. We've included a copy of that bid for you to see too.)

 

Mr. Lorenz submitted a second bid. We signed a contract on 7/30/14 for the partial replacement of the roof and replacement of the front porch. The front porch was to be replaced bacause it was aging and we had received  an ordinance violation for it.  

 

The following is the contract noting the work that was never completed, however paid for:

 

 This  first contract included the portion of the roof that was later discovered to be poorly installed AS EVIDENCED BY THE INSURANCE COMPANY'S STRUCTURAL ENGINEER REPORT which we will further discuss later in the presentation.  At the time of the contract signing,  Mr. Lorenz promised that the work would begin on August 5, 2014 and that he would remain on the job until it was completely finished.  Mr. Lorenz did not begin any work on the roof until September 4th.  It was obvious after the fact, that money from our initial deposit was used to pacify another customer who Mr. Lorenz spoke of as unreasonable and locked him out of her home.

 

The initial work order was to install new columns, soffit and paint the front porch of the house and to install a (partial) new roof as described in the document authored by Wayne Lorenz. According to the supply inventory list created for the repair of the front porch and authored by a general contractor, Mr. Lorenz expended approximately $160.00 plus tax for the materials used up until the start of the roof. He paid his independent contract labor $10.00 per hour and the laborer did not work 40 hour work weeks.



 

Thus, as deceptively stated in the first hearing, our insurance company agreed to pay for an entire new roof, guttering, and drywall, shelving and additional work all defined on Mr. Lorenz's re-written contract/bid dated August 29, 2014.  And, Mr. Lorenz did not start on the roof until September 4th.

 

Because all the work was not completed from the first contract, and because Mr. Lorenz stated that the majority of the work that remained from Contract One would be easier to complete as he expanded into  the new additional work, we agreed to combine the balance owed and new charges together - pay the total remainder of contract 1 and 50% down payment for the additional work on one check.


 

Please turn to Tab C:

 

Mr. Lorenz stated at the first hearing that he was kept in the dark about the approval process from the insurance company concerning the roof repair.  Mr. Lorenz was not truthful.  Mr. Lorenz was always aware that we were fighting for the insurance company to pay for a complete new roof and, if that happened, we would revisit the price paid for his services …  behind Tab C, you will find Page 2 of letter from Metlife Insurance where it clearly states that Mr. Lorenz was in direct contact with the insurance company and found out all information and updates at the same time we did.  Again, at the first hearing, Mr. Lorenz stated he found out this information after the fact and felt 'blind-sided'.  


 

Behind Tab D, you will find the first accepted bid, lien waiver and check copy from and for Wayne Lorenz

 

Please turn to Tab E:

 

 Mr. Lorenz was paid an additional $4,075.00 - which covered the cost for the complete balance of roof, new guttering, complete cost of front porch  and 50% of the work to be performed inside the home. Behind Tab E you will find the new bid/contract that includes the complete roof and inside repairs authorized for repair by the insurance company. You will also find an additional copy of the contract noting what work was never completed and total check for roof, front porch and 50% of contracted/approved inside repairs.) Thus, as of August 29, 2014, Mr. Lorenz was paid a grand total of $6,600.00 for all work approved by the insurance company and us.  He did not start work on the roof until September 4th and no roofing supplies arrived on site until that date.  

 

Later, we discovered we had to halt direct communication between the insurance adjuster and Mr. Lorenz because the information shared on coverages from Mr. Lorenz  did not match the information we were receiving from the insurance adjuster. (Fascia board repair vs replacement of the entire wall.) At that time, we suspected that Mr. Lorenz attempted to cut costs on materials that were already covered in the paid contract and dishonestly reported to us  that it was approved for him, by the insurance adjuster, to cut into the roof  trusses to repair the fascia board. In fact, the insurance company expected the rear wall to be rebuilt to insure the stability of the load bearing wall. We discovered this when another builder friend, who stopped by to view the construction mess,  called attention to the instability of the back wall due to his damaging cuts to the rafters made by Mr. Lorenz.  This construction friend is a union worker and has been employed by Murphy Contracting for over 15 years.  This damage caused by Mr. Lorenz had to later be repaired by G&S Contracting. 

 

Please turn to Tab F:

 

Your honor, you will find a NOTORIZED Affidavit from Mike Schmitt - contruction laborer explaining the repair and cost. You will also find the pictures of the roof as it was left when Mr. Lorenz deserted the job. These pictures were taken by G & S Contracting after Mr. Lorenz deserted the job. When the Lorenz's hands you their pictures, please be sure to view the edges of the roof as well as the guttering that they were to replace. You will find that the pictures do not include any views of this part of the roof.  

    

 

 

Prior to Mr. Lorenz's disappearance, he lead us to believe that the roof had been completed. This was far from complete. Additionally, the site was left with nails and broken shingles all over our yard causing a very unsafe situation then - and we are still finding rusty nails in the yard today.

 

We later found out that he also never trimmed the hanging shingles, installed the necessary flashing nor cleaned up all the nails and removed shingles from the ground area. None of this remaining work required any new materials and would have assured safety of the workplace.

piles of shingles and nails like these laid all over our front and back yard ...


 

From the onset, Mr. Lorenz stated he was INSURED and a "General Contractor".  He stated this but failed to perform the most basic of pre-planning tasks such as ordering a dumpster for the disposal of shingles.  Jayne went ahead and ordered the dumpster to help move the lagging start process of the roof along.  Mr. Lorenz also stated his company is a LLC. After the fact, it was discovered  that, according to Missouri State Records, it was not an LLC.  

 

 

When on the job:  Mr. Lorenz would appear on the job in the morning, his employee would work during the day, but Mr. Lorenz would disappear around noon time.  Mr. Lorenz continued to refer to his other 'work crews' and job sites and was obviously spending his time AND OUR SUPPLY MONEY on those jobs.  He promised daily that the other jobs would be completed the following day and he would commit his time to our job. then he would leave again for the day.  The next day he'd repeat his promise and he'd disappear again. This was when he complained that the client had locked him out of her home and refused to speak any further to him. He also stated that she contacted the police and had him removed from her property. We tried to be patient with Mr. Lorenz.  

 

At the first hearing, Mrs. Lorenz presented the court with her supply list for our job. We were not privy to the list submitted, so I had our contractor estimate the list of supplies that Mr. Lorenz actually used on our job prior to when he deserted the job.

 

Please go to the information behind Tab G:

 

Behind Tab G you will find an estimated supply list. This supply list was priced by Menard Hardware's resources. Mr. Lorenz stated he uses Menards for his purchases.  


 

As stated before, Mr. Lorenz began working on the new roof on 9/4/14. Mr. Lorenz began working on the roof  late in the afternoon each day (after 4:00pm) and ran until, as late as 11:00pm. THESE WORK HOURS WERE SELECTED BY MR. LORENZ. He replaced the majority of the roof with the lighting of spot lights. As a result, what roofing was replaced was done so poorly, sometimes driving nails directly into the plywood, missing the shingle altogether.  Mr. Lorenz stated he replaced some rotted plywood. He did not, according to the second structural engineer.  

 

Please move on to the information behind Tab H:

 

 The Friday AFTER Mr. Lorenz deserted the job, the insurance company surprised us with a site inspection by a second a structural engineer who discovered that there was a section of the roof that was not properly repaired.

 

Behind Tab H you will find a highlighted Metlife Insurance company structural engineer report and supports the final roof repair pictures under Tab F.) At the first hearing, Mr. Lorenz deliberately lead the Court to believe that THIS structural engineer was a personal friend of ours. In fact, we had never met this structural engineer. This structural engineer was sent out by MetLife Insurance, who also began questioning the quality of Mr. Lorenz's work.


 

We have highlighted areas where the Structural Engineer pointed out the inferior quality of work. Also, please make note that according to Mr. Lorenz,  this work was supposed to be COMPLETE and was completed PRIOR to his final appearance at my home.  Actually, at the time of Mr. Lorenz's departure, he had worked on the roof for a week and it still was not completed. Other contractors stated the job should have taken 1 day to 1.5 days at most.  No matter how the Court chooses to rule on Mr. Lorenz's departure of the job, this work could not be re-repaired correctly unless the roofing material already installed would be replaced. It was a poor installation.

 

Now I will need to backtrack a little to explain WHY we believe The Lorenz's provoked a disagreement that they felt gave them reason to  disappear  from the job site.

 

Please view the information behind Tab I:

 

Behind Tab I  please see a notorized letter from an important witness  and St. Louis weather map from September 10th. This letter was not read into the record, however was given to the Judge in the information he used to consider the final verdict. Names have been removed for this publication only. ) 

 

WITNESS TESTIMONIAL

O'Fallon, Missouri  63368

 

January 17, 2015

Your Honor, 

My name is Diann and I am the mother of Nick.  Nick was recruited by the contractor Mr. Lorenz to help him.  Let me give you a little details about my son. Nick was 15 years old and never did roofing or work of the is type before.  This so called contractor never once asked or contacted me to see if it was ok if my son helped him.  I originally thought Nick was just visiting at Jayne Robinson's house.

 

On September 9th, I drove by the Robinson's house and saw Nick on the roof with Mr. Lorenz and a couple other guys.  So when Nick came home that night we talked and I was told that Mr. Lorenz asked Nick if he wanted to help.  Mr. Lorenz stated he would pay Nick for the work he does. I said ok, but just be safe. I later found out that Nick was operating an electric nail gun on the roof in the rain.

 

On September 10th, Nick went back down to The Robinson's house. Nick said he had to hurry because they had to try to hurry before the rain came.  The next thing I knew Nick came back home in the pouring rain and asked me if we had any tarps because the storm had approached and need them to cover the roof.  He said Mr. Lorenz did not have any tarps.  Nick took two tarps down to the Robinson's house.

 

Nick got home around 10:30 that evening after I called him to come home.  Nick was soaked and cold.  He told me the Robinson's roof was leaking inside and did not know how it was going to hold because Mr. Lorenz did not have the things to hold down the tarps. The next day, Septemvber 11th, it continued to rain hard all day. Nick went down to The Robinson's house after school and started to help clean up.  Nick said the ceiling had fallen inside the house due to the heavy rain and the tarps not secured properly.  Nick cleaned up as much as possible.

 

A couple weeks passed and Nick talked with Mr. Lorenz again.  I asked if he had been paid by Mr. Lorenz.  Nick said no. I asked why and Nick told me that Mr. Lorenz said he would not be paid because The Robinson's did not pay him so he was unable to pay my son.

 

I later brought this to Jayne Robinson's attention to find out why my son had not been paid.  Jayne Robinson proceeded to inform me that Mr. Lorenz had been paid and showed me the cashed checks as proof.

 

So, as it stands, my son Nick still has not been paid for his time and hard workand the use of my tarps, which Mr. Lorenz never returned to me.  I had to track them down and The Robinsons returned them to me.

 

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to call.

 

Thank you,

 

WITNESS SIGNATURE

Signed and Notorized

                      _______________

 

Weather reports were announced days in advance of  a storm heading toward the St. Louis area - expected to hit in the afternoon/evening of  September 10, 2014. As a matter of fact, I have enclosed a letter from a woman whose tarps were used to cover the roof AFTER the rain came pouring into the attic.  In this letter she explains that the tarps were removed from her home  AFTER the rain was pouring down and this was told to her  by her 15-year-old son.  The mother was aware that her son was helping Mr. Lorenz , however UNAWARE that the 15 year-old son was on top of my roof operating a construction electric nail gun in the rain by direction of Mr. Lorenz.  Mr. Lorenz hired the teen, promised to pay him $200 for his efforts, and then never paid him.  Mr. Lorenz told The 15-year-old , along with other neighbors, that we had never paid Mr. Lorenz for ANY work he did on our home. 

 

Would you mind if I had Jayne read this letter into the minutes of this hearing?

 

At this point in the hearing, the judge began to try to speed the process along and did not want to allow us to read the letter in the record. Jayne addressed the point that since the actual damages we were suing for was for the damages our home sustained because of Mr. Lorenz's failure to properly secure our roof from further damages in a storm, it was important this information be heard. The Judge and Jayne exchanged commentary. Jayne explained that she felt the need to exonerate herself from the slander charge, especially as she is a Journalist. 

There is only one place I posted anything about this home and the subsequent dealings with this contractor - that was on Facebook. I have 467 family members and friends on my Facebook account and found that by communicating via Facebook with the many people concerned about the situation, it saved me numerous phone calls to update people about the miserable situation. Additionally, I suffered serious skin and lung allergies from the mold, and then later the insulation dust throughout my home and was unable to maintain the strength to repeat the story over and over again via phone calls.  Thus, Facebook was a God-Send to me.  

What I want to emphasis here is … that in no posting EVER did I use Wayne Lorenz's name, any families name, address, physical description … NOTHING that could identify him as the contractor that caused damages to my home. I only referred to him as "The Mickey Mouse Builder", which was a name given to him by the contractors that later discovered and fixed all the damages he caused to my home. I stress again … I NEVER used his name or any other identifiable information that could be used in a Slander charge. Additionally … I never posted one word that was a lie. Every single post was the absolute truth.

 So … after the stun lessened concerning the verdict … I rationalized that the Judge that heard the case certainly understands what constitutes "Slander" … and he must have read something that appeared to be slanderous.  It dawned on me that maybe … just maybe … the information submitted by the Lorenz's may not be the actual information that was posted on my Facebook. Since Mr. Lorenz's in-laws own an Electronics Store in O'Fallon and are experts in the repairs of TV's and computers, which the entire family has worked in the family business at one time or the other … we became suspicious of the content of the information submitted to the court as evidence for slander.  We were not given any copies of what the judge received from the Lorenz's. We do not know what they submitted as evidence in the hearing.  

On December 31st … I again tried to access these posts off my Facebook account … and they have disappeared.  I asked other Facebook friends and family members to do the same. The post have completely disappeared. I contacted Facebook and asked if they removed the posts. I was informed that they did not remove the posts. I am still awaiting the IP addresses that had access to my Facebook since the damage done to my home. I had hoped to have this info by our court date today … but it has not yet been received.  I asked a couple friends on my Facebook account to go back into their history of posts and copy any posts they could find from me dated September 10th through December 5th.  No posts could be founds on any of their computers. I asked for a  statement from each explaining such and if they ever saw me use the Mickey Mouse Builder's name in any posts.

 

I immediately asked three of my Facebook friends to copy any and all posts from me concerning the damages Mr. Lorenz caused to my home and save them to their computers. I also asked that someone send them to me via e-mail. Even at this time, I never told any of these friends who the Mikey Mouse Builder was! Ms. April Bardell  did exactly that. She has also save the posts from her computer to a flash drive for you. I also have a copy printed for you. I ask that you please compare these posts to any posts submitted by the Lorenz's for accuracy.The following is a sworn statement from Mrs. Bardell that was submitted to the Judge for consideration:

 

I also asked three of my Facebook friends for statements:


 Now, I can think of no other party that would care to remove these posts … and ONLY these posts from my Facebook account. I again ask that you review any and all information given to you by Mr. Lorenz for authenticity and accuracy … If you find something truly slanderous that I have committed, I request that this information be forwarded to me, so that I may view the infraction. I am surprised that this information  was not given to me at the time the Judge fined me in his first ruling, as he considered it evidence against me.

I take this very, very serious as my civil rights have been restricted by this ruling …

 

After hearing this, the Judge picked up the initial verdict and read that we had been found guilty of slander and had a "cease and desist" order against us. He seemed to understand why we were so determined, dropped the verdict from the first trial and made it clear that there was no slander found in any proceeding AND dropped the "cease and desist order". However the Lorenz's walked away from the possibility of entering falsified information in the first hearing, that resulted in a slander charge and cease and desist order against us. The Judge was provided the actual screen shots from April Bardell's computer and a flash drive with all posts saved from her computer. 

 

 

The weather maps clearly show that the storm was of a good size and severity and had been forecasted two days ahead of time. Mr. Lorenz did nothing to protect the stripped roof from any impending weather. As a matter of fact he didn't even have the proper materials on the jobsite to protect the roof from impending storm.  He was fully aware of the upcoming storm and referred to it several times while working that evening. He was focused on trying to beat the arrival of the storm. The 15 year old employee of Mr. Lorenz clearly explained this all to his mother, as she references in her NOTORIZED letter.

 

Thus, Mr. Lorenz did not properly cover our bare roof, nor re-attach vents on the roof. When a major storm hit, rainwater poured into the attic of our home.   Water started dripping from the ceiling early the following morning, so we placed a bucket under the area. The next day, our living room ceiling came crashing down destroying the ceiling, light fixture and wallpaper in the room and covering everything with saturated insulation.  The insulation was partially removed from the room, wrong sized dry wall was replaced on part of the damaged ceiling and that is how the scene was left.

 

 


To top all this off, Wayne Lorenz replaced the dry wall on the ceiling with that of a wrong thinkness and now the ceiling is permanently damaged as no matter what the painter did, he could not get the seams to match. Additionally, the entire living room ceiling has a VERY NOTICEABLE wavey surface bacause all the drywall absorbed the rainwater softened and sagged due to the weight of the wet insulation in the attic.  

When this was discussed in the first hearing, Mr. Lorenz began rattling off dry wall size regulations during the first hearing, which means nothing to us. The damaged ceiling was the original ceiling installed during the building of the home by the contractor that built the entire subdivision.  Factually, the dry wall he nailed permanently back into the spot was the wrong thickness, thus now the ceiling is permanently marred and also has a distinct wavy surface because of the water saturation of the remaining drywall that he did not replace. It will cost us approximately $10,000 to fix this mess he caused. Mr. Lorenz stated to both Jayne and I that he would repair the damages caused to our roof and told us not to worry about the damages.

 

Two attempts were made to correct the problem without removing the entire ceiling and reinstalling. Also, please make note that we are not including the installation of a new ceiling in this lawsuit.

 

The morning after the storm, Mr. Lorenz was no where to be found and not answering his cell phone. When the mold removal specialist, David McCoy of KKC Environmental arrived to do his work, he immediately gathered all his industrial fans and 'air scrubbers' and placed them around the house to help eliminate any further possibility of more mold developing.  When Mr. Lorenz finally arrive on the job site, he was laughing about the damaged ceiling. Jayne was shocked by his reaction and told him so.   Mr. Mc Coy  later instructed Mr. Lorenz to drill holes through our ceiling, into our attic to dry the moisture. Fans were also placed in the attic.  This is how the scene was left at a later time, when Mr. Lorenz vacated the job.

 

After the ceiling caved in, Mr. Lorenz was seldom on the jobsite AGAIN, however his employee was finishing up smaller tasks each day.  We continued to look up at the drywalled ceiling and saw no further effort to fix the mess. 

 

Mr. Lorenz whined about needing money almost on a daily basis. He would always wait until Brian was not around to pressure Jayne for more money.  On September 12, 2014, Mr. Lorenz began begging for more funds again, with the statement that his wife and he were just beginning to learn to see the errors of their budgeting and appreciated the advice Jayne shared with them about business management.

 

Jayne  pointed out that he had not finished any of the work on the 2nd contract, but took him for his word that the roof was complete.  We had not gone up on the roof to check the progress.  Jayne discussed my disappointment with the progress of the job and asked that Mr. Lorenz to  stay on this job and complete it. He promised he would not leave the job, but insisted he needed more money for supplies. 

 

Jayne agreed to contact the bank who was holding the contract funds in escrow and discussed it with them. She did not tell the insurance company OR bank about the ceiling disaster in hopes that everything could be fixed without any more red tape. She even helped Mr. Lorenz organize and re-write the contract so it made sense to the bank and insurance company. She made arrangements for a partial check to be picked up once photos of the progress were forwarded to the bank.  None of the photos Mr. Lorenz provided for this showed the incomplete edges of the roof or not-replaced guttering.

 

After discussing the check with the bank, Jayne  hung up the phone and went to tell Mr. Lorenz the outcome of the discussion with the bank, and he was gone AGAIN!  This was at 1:00pm.  Jayne was informed of his departure from David McCoy of KKC Environmental, who stated he left immediately after he spoke with Jayne.

 

Jayne called Mr. Lorenz on his cell phone and asked why he left. He stated because he did not have any more money for materials. (Please make note of all the incomplete work in the attached photos that did not require funds to complete.) Jayne told Mr. Lorenz that she was going to pick up another check that afternoon, but since he did not remain on the job AGAIN, she would NOT retrieve that check. She told Mr. Lorenz that she would not discuss this any further until she spoke with me and that I would be in contact with him. It is very important that you understand that she stated that I would be in contact with Mr. Lorenz and that she removed herself from discussing the situation any further.

 

Jayne contacted our bank and insurance company and explained the situation. Both refused to issue any further funds to Wayne Lorenz until all the contracted work to date was completed.

  

At approximately 5:00pm that same day,  Jayne was watching the news away from eyesight of our front door, Mr. Lorenz entered the home with his wife. The door was opened with no notice - they did not ring the doorbell and they did not knock on the door.  They arrived well past work hours, as explained before, he had left for the day prior to 1:00pm.  

 

Amy Lorenz arrived quite irritated and started loudly complaining about how late her husband was working on the roof, which completely befuddled Jayne, as this was his choice to work those hours.  Because of her irrational demeanor, Jayne told her that she was not part of the business arrangements and asked her to leave and would  further discuss problems with Mr. Lorenz. She refused to leave stating she was part of his company. Jayne felt startled, and felt the situation was unsafe  because she was home alone. She again explained that we never entered into any discussions or contracts with her and preferred to speak with her husband about the issues. Jayne asked her to leave again until she spoke further with me. She refused, yelling her refusal.  Jayne then asked Mr. Lorenz to ask his wife to leave. He refused.  she then asked them  both to leave. They left and never returned. They also never returned any phone calls to other contractors or myself. They just walked away from all the damages Mr. Lorenz caused and repairs still owed.

 

During the last hearing, the Judge made note that he noticed the Lorenz checking account was over $200.00 overdrawn at that time,  which must have sparked Mrs. Lorenz's temper. It was obvious she intended to leave with money, whether the job was up to date or not. Responsible business people do not knowledgeably over draw checking accounts. Please remember, we did not owe Mr. Lorenz another check at the time. He had plenty of work already paid for and not completed.  Issuing another check would have been a kindness. It was again obvious that funds paid for our repairs were used on a different job.   

 

After not receiving a response from my phone messages, I went to speak to Janet Howard (the mother-in-law) on September 15, 2014 and explain that Mr. Lorenz needed to return his phone call because the damages needed to be fixed. She stated that Jayne was rude to her daughter and said a very vile thing to her, all of which were false. Jayne repeated the attempt to dialogue with her in a Facebook private message and received a "thumbs up" sign.  

 

Please turn to Tab M:

 

This is a copy of the Facebook message sent to Janet Howard from Jayne.  


 

Jayne Robinson 

Jan ... I am utterly shocked at what you've told Brian I was to have said to your daughter. Nothing anywhere close to that was ever said and I'm sorry you do not feel you know me better than to believe the insanity. I hope you always keep in the back of your mind that the possibility exists that some things said by kids are to offset the facts of what actually happened. Brian and I are attempting to keep your kids out of legal trouble. MetLife brought a structural engineer out and along with the contractors present on the job, the structural engineer asked them all to witness what was done on the roof. Shingles were placed over rotted wood and the integrity of the roof is compromised. The very next rain will probably leak water into the house because of the poor installation area. It is supposed to rain tomorrow night.There was no roof flashing installed on the roof, no new gutters installed. The area in question seems to be about the size of 4 sheets of plywood - a ridiculous risk to take in shorting out supplies. There will be a legal structure engineer report filed with MetLife and a copy sent to us and our homeloan bank. Add this into the damages sustained when the roof was not properly covered and the water caused our ceiling to fall into our living room, damaged a wallpapered wall and dropped a portion of an adjoining bedroom ceiling - well, Brian and I should not be expected to cover the costs of the damages. Your daughter should never have been here when the project was discussed. Her name does not appear anywhere on any contracts or paperwork signed by Wayne Lorenz or ourselves, so for her to come inside and start complaining about WAYNE'S CHOICE of working at night on the roof ... well, it was absurd. I said exactly what I would have said to my own children - "this is not your concern, so please leave now." She argued further ... then I asked them both to leave. If Wayne Lorenz decides that he does not want to finish the repairs he owes on this home, then I would be happy to get another contractors bid to fix the damages caused by Wayne and he can pay out of pocket. If he chooses to repair the damages himself, we can make arrangements, however Amy is not to be on our property while the work is completed. Finally ... and I truly hope you help the kids realize that we hope it does not have to be resolved in this manner - the structural engineer report, as well as, all the witnesses present when the ceiling damage happened will be more than enough evidence to win a case in small claims court. It's a shame this has all happened. I've learned a very valuable lesson - I never should have hired Wayne Lorenz because of his association with what I thought was a friend, without asking for proof of contractor's insurance and without a better list of references than just yourself. I wish you the best in trying to deal with this on your end. The only reason we have involved you further is because Wayne is not returning Brian's messages or David McCoy's messages. Again ... it is supposed to rain tomorrow evening ... this must be resolved now. Thanks for any help you may give ... I really do appreciate the assistance.

·                                 September 21

·                                

Janet Howard

9/21, 6:41pm

 

 

 

 We sent a 10 day notice by certified mail to Mr. Lorenz.  It was signed and a return receipt was delivered to me on September 29, 2014. 

   We then waited ten days for a response from Mr. Lorenz. There was none.

  

Days later, I received a certified letter demanding $3000,00 for payment of the final contract denied by the bank and insurance company.

 

The house still needed to be repaired. After ten days,  I contracted with a new builder and roofer and had repairs completed. The material list and contractor costs are attached. I am VERY happy with the work performed by all other contractors. 

 

Please turn to Tab P

 

Here you will find affadavits, bills and lien waivers for contractors repairs to damages caused by Mr. Lorenz and extensions of  POD and dumpster contracts due to the stoppage of the job.  There are also photos of additional damages caused by Mr. Lorenz that I will further explain.  I've also included affadavits from the contractors that repaired the damages caused by Wayne Lorenz, that include explanations of the damages discovered.    

 


 


 

Breakdown of Balance Owed:

 

KKC Environmental solutions         

Rental of air scrubbers and fans / dry out services

3 weeks                                                                $1250.00

 

Michael Schmitt

Repair and finishing of roof

replacement of damaged shingles and rotted plywood  1000.00

 

G & S Contracting

drywall mud, tape and refinish surface of

living room bedroom and bedroom closet ceilings -

(permanent loss of one foot of living area due to damages caused by Mr. Lorenz and bad wood cuts               1000.00

 

Grace Hauling                                                                 

Extension of dumpster rental time                         255.00

 

1-800-PackRat    

Extension of time for use of storage POD               204.60

 

Paid $3350.00 for work on list - less than 20% was completed or repaired improperly and paid another contractor to fix. Asking for partial refund.                                   1245.00

   

                                                        $ 4954.60

 

 

Other problems surfaced as a result of work performed.

 

ü     Mr. Lorenz cut into an electrical wire, then wrapped it and hid it behind a 2/4 in the master bedroom. The new builder found the burnt wire and an electrician came in and fixed the wire.  All builders on site agreed that this wire would probably  have started the home fire in time.


ü     Mr. Lorenz cut too deeply into the rafters in our roof in an attempt to fix the fascia board. This compromised the soundness of the  back load -bearing wall. In order to restablize the wall, a new wall had to be built one foot deep inside the living space of the room and down the entire wall. We permanently lost 8.5 feet of living area in our home due to this error.  Please make note that we are not including the loss of living space in this lawsuit, only the cost to repair the damages he made to our load bearing wall.


ü     Unknown to us, Mr. Lorenz hired a 15 year old minor as a 'roofer' and had him operating nail guns while shingling the roof of our home in the rain. We had no idea that this youth was actually roofing our home, but thought he was just watching and befriending Mr. Lorenz. This youth complains that he was promised $200 and was never paid by Mr. Lorenz.  The young man was told by Mr. Lorenz that he was never paid ANY MONEY us. Isn't this libel?

ü     Our living room ceiling has been permanently damaged due to the saturation of the ceiling dry wall by rainwater. We will have to replace the entire ceiling to correct all the damages and it will cost approximately $10,000. The new builder repaired the ceiling as best as possible, however the drywall is now wavy and the ceiling texture does not cover all the marred surface.  This replacement cost is also not reflected in the damages to our home.


ü     We arranged to have a dumpster placed in the driveway of our home so that shingles could be tossed directly into the container, however Mr. Lorenz threw the shingles onto our shrubbery and lawn area, causing damage to our shrubbery.  Shingles and nails littered our entire yard causing a dangerous scenario for my grandchildren and other workers on our property. We are still trying to remove all the debris he left behind.

 

                 _______________________

At this point Judge DEMarce cut off any open testimony about this case, minimizing all the information by saying ... it's apparent you all don't like each other? I just want to hear information pertaining to the case. 

At this point Jayne Voss-Robinson was pretty much cut off from further addressing the court. However, we did include the following written information in the final documents submitted to the Judge:

 


My husband just gave you the description of the original suit we filed against Mr. Wayne Lorenz.  This is the information we presented at the first hearing. I will now need to present additional information that we hope serves to nullify many of the erroneous and defamatory statements made during the original hearing.  We regret that we must be-labor some of the incidentals in this case, but since the defendant, his wife and mother-in-law were allowed to say these things and they became a matter of record in this hearing we feel we must address the inaccuracy of these statements and attempted character assassinations.

Our testimony was pretty much stopped at this point as the Judge did not want to hear any testimony from the first hearing.


Defendants testimony:

We do not have a print out of the defendants testimony, however we made notes of what was said.

1.) Amy Lorenz verified there was a $200 overdraft in their account on the day that the defendants entered our home, unannounced and without a knock or rung doorbell. They did not deny the manner in which they entered, but defended the invasion by repeating what Jayne told all workers while on the job. It was stated by Jayne to enter without knocking, so not to disturb her while she was working. (Work hours) Amy Lorenz did not agree with the time they arrived, but did not deny that they were not "working" on the job at the time. 

2.) Amy Lorenz argued that her husband never stated he was a general contractor. She claims he stated he is a independent contractor.

 

3.) Amy Lorenz stated the roof was complete and the day after the departure from the job, people were on the roof causing damage to make it look like it was not complete.

4.) Amy Lorenz stated 'they' were unjustly fired. Amy stated that when she arrive, Jayne was sitting in the darkened living room, away from eyesight of the door, with her arms crossed, watching TV. Amy Lorenz stated that Jayne started arguing with them and demanded they leave her 'property'. Amy stated that before leaving she said to Jayne' "Good luck lady in trying to find someone to repair that roof."

5.) Amy Lorenz stated that friends on our Facebook who live in our neighborhood 'probably' vandalized her vehicle.

6.) Wayne Lorenz testified that his wife was part of his company and that they are "business partners".

7.) Wayne Lorenz stated that he was trying to protect the Robinson's roof during a F-0 tornado. 

 

Cross-examination:

Jayne stated that we had no idea what was submitted to the court. Amy Lorenz handed Jayne all the documentation she claimed she was turning over to the Judge, while at the same time, the Judge instructed her to do so.  The complete documentation consisted of ten pages of the original post made on Facebook with 14 notations (mostly one or two word notations, ie: slander, threats) next to select paragraphs. There was no supply list, no weather reports and no documentation that supports anything they stated.

 

The Judge stated he was going to review all the information given to him and issue a verdict by the following day.

 

The trial was over. 

 

The final verdict issued by Judge DeMarce can be found on-line at: https://www.courts.mo.gov/fv/c//BENCH+TRIAL+JUDGMENT_FINAL.pdf?l=CT11&di....

 

Final Commentary: Needless to say we are very disappointed in the Judge's decision. We have been asked numerous times as to what we would do differently if selecting a contractor to work again. This would be our recommendations:

1.) Always get comparative bids.

2.) Check out the contractor on-line - including police and sex predator sites. This was not discovered until after the signing of the contract. 

* This photo and documentation can be found as a matter of public record on the St. Charles County Sex Predator internet site.

3.) Ask for a copy and review the insurance coverages of any contractor.

4.) Have a witness available at the time of the contract signing.

5.) Make sure ANY promises made by the contractor are written out in the work contract. Make sure a defined work timeline is included in the contract.  Require that a list of supplies used on the job be turned over to you before final payment.

6.) Be sure to get lien waivers for EVERY check written to a contractor. 

6.) DO NOT trust information listed with the Better Business Bureau as gospel. Businesses that pay to become members are clients of the BBB. Take the time to research the credibility of the contractor yourself! 

7.) Always ask for at least three business references, specifying the most recent of clients. Be sure to check the references and visually inspect the work.

8.) If you find you need to finalize the relationship in a court of law, ALWAYS bring a lawyer! A lawyer will assure that character attacks,  like those that were allowed to take place against us in St. Charles County 11th Judicial Circuit/ Associate Circuit Court/Small Claims Division Judge Matthew Thornhill's Courtroom, will not be allowed into the process. A lawyer will also effectively be able to challenge any false information presented to the court during the hearing.  If you represent yourself, and must stand up to the Judge to have important information heard, you may be viewed as having a negative demeanor. A lawyer knows how to present the issues "professionally" rather than emotionally.  

9.) Be sure to check Casenet.net records for the courtroom 'experience level' of the party (and any influencial relationship to that party - in our case, Janet Howard)  you file suit against in court. You may find that the defendant has alot more experience than you in a court of law. Experience makes a BIG difference in the 'demeanor' presented by parties in a case. Because the Wayne Lorenz, Amy Lorenz and Janet Howard were allowed to defame our character, unjustly accuse us of slander, and thus were awarded a 'cease and desist' order after the first hearing, and after the disappearance of posts on our Facebook account, we were noticably unhappy with them. We feel this is what Judge DeMarce refers to as 'demeanor'.   The prior possible perjury(ies) and documented facts, sworn statements, structural engineer reports, etc., did not produce what we consider a just decision. The defendants sat and acted far more passive and offered little evidence in support of their position. In our opinion, they knew how to manipulate the systems to the point where truth had no bearing in the final verdict. 

 

Everything posted here is a matter of public record now. We have posted this information so that anyone who does an internet search for Wayne Lorenz, Michael Wayne Lorenz, Amy Lorenz or Janet Howard (all of O'Fallon, Missouri and St. Charles County, MO) are aware of this legal proceeding and it's outcome. We also hope that others learn from our mistakes in the role of consumer and Plaintiff in the court cases.

Additionally, the Judges involved in the two cases are elected to the positions they hold. Voters should be informed of outcomes in the courtrooms and make the decision for themselves as to whether justice is served by the decisions made by elected officials.  

 

Quote of the Day:

'We have entered a time when lying is as natural as breathing and to swear honesty before God means nothing to the ill-repute.'              

________________________________________________________________________________

 

UPDATE: May4,2015

We filed a complaint with the Missouri Attorney General's Office against Judge Matthew Thornhill of St. Charles County - 11th Judicial Circuit (Small Claims) in Mid-April. The complaint is under investigation at this time and we are awaiting an answer from the Missouri Attorney General's Office.  The complaint reads as follows:

 

Our home was damaged by an independent contractor that was installing a new roof on our home.  The contractor did not have the necessary tools available to protect our exposed roof area from a  storm that had been forcasted for three days. The contractor deceived us in information provided to get the contract. He carried no liability insurance, however stated he did when asked and in the appeal hearing in court, he is not a registered business in the State of Missouri, and is a felon - Sex Offender.  After the incident, the contractor continued to pry us for more and more money, without finishing the work originally contracted or fixing the damages his actions caused to our home.

 

Because of the saturated roof insulation from the storm, our living room and bedroom ceiling fell into our home. Days later, the contractor and his wife entered our home without notice and started to demand more  money that was not stipulated as due in our contract, I told them to leave and speak to my husband  about it later. They claimed that by asking them to leave my home, it released them from any liability  to complete or repair the damages caused to our home.

 

We took the contractor to small claims court and asked we be rewarded the cost to repair the situation ($4900.00). We presented the Judge with a binder of information, affadavits, invoices and testimonials from people involved in the case. During the hearing, both parties provided their  "evidence" to Judge Thornhill. We were never privy to the evidence that the defendant gave the  Judge. One week later, we read online that we were found guilty of slander, issued a cease and  desist order and ordered to pay over $2K in damages to the defendant. (The only communication we  used to update family and friends on the disaster was posting on Facebook, however, prior to this hearing becoming public information, we never stated the name of the contractor, his address or  ANY personal information about the contractor. This enabled us to communicate with people who  cared about us, without having to talk to each individually.) Neither party ever asked for a ruling like  the findings prior to the hearing, so the entire hearing was a complete, unprofessional fiasco.

 

We immediately filed an appeal. After the filing of the appeal, but before the appeal hearing, all our postings on Facebook disappeared. However, before this happened, a friend copied all the posts to a  flash drive. The defendants family owns a TV and computer repair store so we became very suspicious and asked Facebook management if they removed the postings. They did not. This was also presented to the Judge at the appeal hearing.

 

The appeal Judge dropped slander charges, the Cease and Desist order and damage amount, however the Judge became very irritated that we verbally insisted a finding on these charges. Still, he clearly stated there was no slander committed in the case. The contractor again walked away from the damages caused to our home after that hearing.

 

We feel that the evidence produced at the first small claims hearing set a negative tone in the outcome of the entire two cases. My husband contacted Judge Thornhill's office three times and asked for a copy of the original evidence and the reasoning he gave for the decision from the first hearing. During the third call he was told he had to write a letter to the Judge and ask for this information. We did so over one month ago and never received an answer.

 

We feel strongly that Judge Thornhill was given false information and believe we should have the right to see any evidence used against us in a court of law. We also feel that the defendant has the same rights. A complete copy of all our evidence presented in the case can be found at http://www.thescoopnewspaper.com/story/jayne-voss-robinson-consumer-plai... or on the front page at www.TheScoopNewspaper.com .

 

Your office is familiar with our newspaper, as you send press releases to our newspaper often. On our site, we have posted every piece of our evidence, affadavits, testimonials and the actual Judge finding documents, as well as the complete story of what happened. We ask for your assistance in obtaining the evidence that the Judge used to formulate his opinion. We also ask that you forward any law that allows the Judge the discretion to not provide evidence to all parties involved in a lawsuit.

 

It has always been my belief that providing evidence used in a hearing was a American's civil right. If this is not my right, I would like a copy of the law that states otherwise. Additionally, we are not the first victim of this contractor irreputable business practices. He needs to be stopped before he hurts other consumers.

 

Thank you for your assistance!