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Valley contractor denies being "con artist" after complaints from homeowners

Posted at 6:04 PM, Sep 10, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-10 21:04:12-04

When Scott Riley walked into the ABC15 building, he did it to clear his name.

"I'm known as a con artist.. and I'm not," Riley explained.

Weeks earlier, he didn't show up for an interview we had set up at a park near him.

We aired a story involving Riley and Valley homeowners who said Riley and his business took their money and didn't finish construction jobs.

Riley owns Finished Touch Renovations.

Richard Quinonez says he paid Riley more than $30,000 for a "dream" renovation.

I asked him what the house looks like now.

He said "terrible."

While the demolition was done, much of the construction had not been completed or even started in some cases.

Richard says he had to hire another contractor to finish the job.

And he says on a teacher's salary, that is tough.

Riley says his business did a lot of work in Richard's house.

I told him the money wasn't evident in the work I saw completed.

I asked where the money went.

"I'm telling you materials, labor, and loss. It didn't go in my pocket because I was broke," Riley told me.

The Arizona Registrar of Contractors has told Riley to "cease and desist."

They were looking into six similar complaints.

Riley says he worked hard to complete jobs.

He blames issues on an employee quitting.

And since Riley doesn't have a contractor's license, he says he depended on that employee's license to do the work.

But we found that license was suspended and then revoked while Finished Touch Renovations was taking the money and in the middle of projects.

I asked, "So you were relying on a guy who had a suspended license from the beginning?"

Riley answered, "And I didn't even know it."

Riley is the only name officially connected with the business.

I asked as owner, how he didn't know there was a valid license.

Riley says he should have known and gave this person too much freedom.

As for victims like Richard Quinonez, he's stuck taking out loans and using his retirement money to complete the job.

It is crucial you check a contractor's license before hiring anyone.

Also, check and question online reviews

Click here to check licenses with the Arizona Registrar of Contractors.