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Arrest warrant issued for Joplin wedding planner - KOAM TV 7

Arrest warrant issued for Joplin wedding planner

Updated:
Amy Jones Amy Jones

Updated January 16, 2014:  An arrest warrant has been issued for a Joplin wedding planner who failed to appear in court today.

A judge had previously warned the attorney for Amy Jones that if she did not appear in court today, a warrant would be issued.

As an owner of Dream Makers Events, Jones is accused of overcharging customers for services that were never rendered.  Two charges of forgery have been filed against Jones.

This past September we spoke with the stepfather of a bride whose wedding was held at the Christman's Event Center .  In their case, the bride's family claims they were charged four times the amount they had agreed on with Mrs. Jones.

 

Updated September 23, 2013 - Joplin police issues an arrest warrant for a local wedding planner.

Jasper County prosecutor filed two forgery charges today against Amy Jones the owner of DreamMakers events.

Jones has been accused overcharging customers for services that were never rendered.

Earlier this month we aired a report and spoke to the stepfather of a bride whose wedding was held at the Christman's Event Center this summer.

In their case the bride's family claims they were charged four times the amount they had agreed on with Mrs. Jones.

Records show that Jones has not been arrested.

We will have the details of the accused crimes as soon as the court makes those documents public records.

Probable Cause released for Amy Jones:

On 7/22/2013 Amy L. Jones presented check #8406. An altered check, to the Community Bank & Trust, located at 5570 N. Main St. Joplin, Jasper County, Missouri, on the account of Pulaski County Tourism Bureau in the amount of $330.00 and purported the check to be real and genuine.

On 7/25/2013, an altered check, was presented to the Community Bank and Trust, located at 5570 N. Main St. Joplin, Jasper County, Missouri, on the account of LA2Missouri Fitness LLC in the amount of $300.00 and purported the check to be real and genuine.

Witness, Beth Wiles the Executive Director of the Pulaski County Tourism Bureau and Visitors Center, stated that they did not authorize the altering of check #8406 for the payee to be changed from "city of Joplin" to "dream Makers Events".

Witness, Amy Wills with Anytime Fitness (LA2Missouri Fitness LLC), stated that they did not authorize the altering of check #2862 for the payee to be changed from "city of Joplin" to "dream Makers event".

Amy Jones is one of the owners of "Dream Makers Event" and was the person on bank security video presenting the check #8406 as real and genuine.

Amy Jones, Dream Makers Events, was contracted by the city of Joplin to collect fees for the Route 66 International Festival and agreed to accept check that were made out to the City of Joplin.

No authorization was given by the City of Joplin for any checks to be altered.

Amy Jones admitted that she was the on who altered the checks and that it was her handwriting. The city of Joplin will assist in the prosecution.

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Reported September 2, 2013 by Jehan Sheikh:  Planning a wedding is a day many women dream of, but what about when that day does not go according to plan because services you ordered were not rendered or you were overcharged?

A Jasper County, Missouri family claims a local event company did not live up to it's word.

Keith Savage is the stepfather of a bride who recently had her wedding at the Christman's Event Center in Joplin.

He and his family had never heard of Dream Makers Events and the Christman's Center until they met the owners, Amy and Craig Jones, at a bridal fair.

Savage says since they booked the event center at the fair Amy Jones offered the reception hall at a discounted rate of $1,600, services included.

"There was supposed to be a DJ there, was supposed to be set up, there was supposed to be clean up, there was supposed to be bussing of the tables, the things to just operate the facility," says Savage.

But Savage says those services were not provided and his credit card was charged $6,600 instead of the agreed upon $1,600.

"I thought 'ok, that's interesting - that's a mistake,'" says Savage.  "So then I further looked at my bill and five times through the month of April was deducted another $1,000 five different days, made to a PayPal account directly to Amy Jones.  The first one was to Dream Makers and the $5,000 was to a PayPal directly to Amy Jones' account."

Savage canceled the two cards.  His credit card company deemed the charges as fraudulent and had him file a police report.

"I got a call from the credit card company last week reaffirming they used the term 'fraud' that they had not been paid still from April from these reimbursements," Savage says.

The Jones' would not agree to an on camera interview but they did issue a written statement in response to the extra charges deducted from Savage's account:

'Yes, there was a credit card dispute.  We followed the procedures through the credit card company, and Mr. Savage was reimbursed.  If, after reimbursement, Mr. Savage is still unsatisfied, we would be glad to meet with him and work hard to make him a happy customer."

Savage says he has refund statements that prove otherwise.

"We actually received what is now obviously a false refund statement," says Savage.  "This is where they were supposedly refunded back to the account and these funds never did reach a transaction state to my account or credit card company so I don't know where these came from."

Savage says that Jones sent him a refund receipt but none of those refunds have shown up in Savage's account and the credit card company says they have yet to receive them as well.

"If these are true refunds, which is what it says it is, it never did reach my account or my credit card account as of last week so subsequently my credit card company then provided me my refunds through their company policy so this is where I received my reimbursement from the unauthorized charges to my credit card," says Savage.

Captain Derek Walrod with the Jasper County Sheriff's Office says the credit card company is now considered the victim in this case because they were the ones to reimburse Savage.  Captain Walrod says the case is closed because the company has not contacted the sheriff's office to pursue charges.

"If you think there is something that doesn't look right I would encourage you to make a report or contact your local law enforcement agency and run it by them and they can tell you by looking at what you have if they think it's a criminal case or a civil case," says Captain Walrod.

Though the wedding planning didn't go as smooth as Savage and his family had hoped for, he is glad he received what was owed and that his step-daughter is now happily married.

In the state of Missouri if the value of a fraudulent use of a credit card or debit device is less than $150 it's considered a Class "A" Misdemeanor.  If the value exceeds that it's a Class "D" Felony.

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