diesel mechanic pleads guilty to fraud

Thursday, January 11, 2018 12:23 PM
Written by Stan Maddux
Category: Local News

A local diesel mechanic has pleaded guilty to soaking customers for thousands of dollars.

A couple of years ago.....41 year old Erik Smith operated a shop in Wanatah and Westville.

According to authorities....he accepted money up front to repair pick up trucks and other


But didn't finish the repairs.

After weeks and even months went by......the victims tried getting back their vehicles......but

were not able to.

Close to a dozen vehicles were recovered when the sheriff's office executed a search warrant

at his repair shops in 2015.

One of the victims was the town of Wanatah.

Police say he rebuilt the engine on a dump truck but billed the town for a more costly

new motor.

Under the plea.......Smith will be placed on one year probation.

But...he must pay eight victims a total of close to 20 thousand dollars.

Sentencing is set in LaPorte Circuit Court for the 14th of next month.