PLEASANT HILL, Mo. — Lunsford Auto Care has a string of angry customers, or so FOX4 Problem Solvers learned after airing one man’s grievance and hearing from several others with similar tales.
“Someone else is going through this. It’s not just me.”
That’s what Austin Pierpoint said was his initial thought when he saw the story about Lunsford on FOX4 in June.
Pierpoint said his own problems with the repair shop began last November after someone backed into his truck, ramming the driveshaft into the transmission and the transmission into the transfer case.
An insurance adjuster estimated the damage at nearly $10,000.
He took the truck to Lunsford Auto Care on 7 Highway, which wanted the money upfront — something most repair shops don’t require since they have your vehicle as collateral.
The insurance company paid Lunsford Auto about $5,000, and Pierpoint picked up the rest.
Lunsford Auto Care owner Derek Bartholomew promised him the work would be completed in a month, Pierpoint said. But one month turned into two, then three, then four.
“He eventually had it for seven months altogether,” Pierpoint said, adding that you could build an entire truck in that amount of time.
And the repairs weren’t finished.
He said Bartholomew kept telling him he was working on some new problem, but almost every time Pierpoint drove by the shop, he said he saw his truck just sitting in the parking lot.
“I said you’re fired from the job,” Pierpoint said he told Bartholomew.
He then demanded his still troubled truck back, but he said Bartholomew wanted another $2,000 before he would release it.
Under the cover of night, he returned and stole his truck back, taking it to a new repair shop in Kansas City. It’s been there a month and will cost him another $800 to get the truck in working order, he said.
FOX4 called Lunsford Auto Care for its side of this story. We were told Bartholomew would definitely call us back, but we have yet to hear from him.
Meanwhile, Pierpoint has now become the second customer to file a complaint with Pleasant Hill police. They’re investigating the repair shop for possible violations of Missouri’s Consumer Protection Act.