JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Editor’s Note: Father & Sons Fence Co. in Jacksonville, owned by Glen Northrup, is not affiliated with any other business — including those with the same or similar names.
After the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office obtained an arrest warrant, the owner of a Jacksonville fence company at the center of a monthslong News4JAX I-TEAM investigation turned himself in.
Since our first story aired in June, at least 12 customers of Father and Sons Fence Co. have contacted us to say they paid thousands of dollars in deposits to the company’s owner Glen Northrup — but no one returned to complete the work.
JSO’s Economic Crimes Unit began its own investigation following our June story and got a warrant for Northrup’s arrest. On Wednesday night, the I-TEAM learned that Northrup had turned himself in. Northrup is accused of conspiracy to commit organized fraud, which is a third-degree felony. If he, Northrup faces up to five years in prison.
The families who contacted the I-TEAM all say tell us they were each required to give a down payment of 50% of the total cost of their fence job — paying anywhere from $1,600 to nearly $5,000 as a deposit. But they say Northrup gave them the runaround and never did the work he was paid to do.
PREVIOUS I-TEAM STORY: Customers out thousands of dollars after paying deposits for fence work that wasn’t done
In June, the I-TEAM went searching for Northrup and started at the business address for Father and Sons Fence Co. on 103rd Street. When we got there, we found the business gone and the lot being completely cleared. Court documents show Northrup had been evicted from the property.
We finally did track Northrup down and he agreed to interview with us on camera. In that June interview, admitted to the I-TEAM he had dozens of customers he had taken money from but had not finished the work.
“We’re working hard to get it done. If they want their money, we’ll get it back to them,” Northrup said. “I’m not running from nobody, it’s just hard times right now.”
“How are you going to get it back to them?” we asked.
“I’m selling stuff, trying to get a job done here and there, and I’m going to get their money back to them,” he answered.
“How many of those customers have you taken deposits from?” we asked.
“Maybe 30,” he answered.
“So how much do you think you’re in the hole?” we asked.
“Probably $25,000, $30,000,” he said.
During that June interview, the 63-year-old told us he hoped to pay back all of his customers by the end of July.
“I apologize, you know. I didn’t know this was going to happen. I’m going to do whatever it takes to make things right, and I hope they understand,” said Northrup.
It’s now August, and so far, none of the 12 customers we have spoken to have had their fences completed or had their money returned.
“My fence has been down for over two months, and I still have nothing,” said Charles Weaver, who hired the fence company. “We wrote him a check for 50%, which was $3,275.”
Westside homeowner Robert Baker said he paid 50% upfront so he could get a new PVC fence. He showed us the contract and the receipt for the cashier’s check that he gave to Father and Sons Fence Co.
“This is what I paid, a $2,800 deposit for them to finish this, and now we’re talking four months later, and this is what I got,” Baker said.
He has seven grandchildren who play in his backyard and a homeowners association that’s threatening fines. To make matters worse, he recommended the company to his aunt who lives across the street, and she gave the same company $2,000 without any results.
“I tried to reach out to them, and they just gave us excuse after excuse,” he said.
Northrup’s customers are losing hope.
“At this point, I would have, but we’re talking March, and now we’re in August. My confidence level is going down,” Baker said. “To fall on hard times, I understand that, but to take numerous people’s money after mine, I don’t think they have an excuse for that.”
Now, Baker said, he has to shell out even more money to hire a new company to do the job.
If you are a customer who paid Glen Northrup for work that was not completed, email the I-TEAM at email@example.com.