Contractor banned from doing business in Johnson County, Kansas

Problem Solvers
This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.
Data pix.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Remember this name: Todd Smith.

He's a contractor who owes so many people so much money that on March 25 a judge banned him from ever doing business again in Johnson County, Kansas.

Unfortunately that court order came to late for teacher Laura Whitaker, who paid Smith $6,400 to paint her home and fix her rotting deck in time for her son's wedding. Two months later, and with the wedding just a week away, much of the work had yet to be done.

"I've had a lot of contractors that are slow but this is different," said Whitaker who tried everything from positive reinforcement to yelling at Smith, but nothing worked.

She finally fired Smith and demanded most of her $6,400 back.

"I told him that if he gave me back $4,000 (of the deposit), I will pay (him) $2,300 just to go away," she said.

According to text messages, Smith agreed. But that was weeks ago and the payment deadline has come and gone and she never saw any money.

Whitaker's complaint is the fourth Problem Solvers has received about Todd Smith. All are nearly identical: Customers said they paid Smith to do work he never completed even after months of excuses and delays.

FOX 4 Problem Solvers finally caught up with Smith in 2015 when he was trying to bid another Johnson County job. As soon as he saw us, he bolted for his truck, but promised us he would repay the customers who were owed money. He never did.

The Johnson County District Attorney's office has received dozens of complaints about Smith, which is why the DA has now banned Smith from doing business in the county as of late March. But Whitaker and other victims have told us they want the DA to do more -- to prosecute Smith criminally -- saying the multiple civil penalties against Smith don't seem to make a difference.

"He just keeps doing it," Whitaker said. "He doesn't care if it's a woman, a man, a retiree."

The DA's office said if Smith violates the court order and continues working in Johnson County, it may consider pursuing criminal charges. Nothing is off the table. The District Attorney would like to hear from anyone in Johnson County who believes they have been victimized by Smith.

2020 Elections

Check More Election Results



More News