52-year-old Richard P. Farrant of Riverview Road in Taylorsville was arrested yesterday (May 29) by Officers with the Morganton Dept. of Public Safety on a warrant out of Buncombe County for obtaining property by false pretense. Additional charges are pending.
The previous day, Morganton Public Safety Investigators were notified of a possible home improvement scam in progress in Morganton’s Winding Creek community. An unknown female had been calling senior citizen homeowners in the area, offering free in-home energy efficiency assessments. Once the offer was accepted, Richard Farrant would call the homeowner to confirm the appointment.
On one occasion, Farrant allegedly threatened to bill one elderly female for wasting his time when she was unable to keep her appointment. The woman called a neighbor, who suspected a scam and called Police. Further investigation revealed that Farrant had solicited at least four senior citizens in the Winding Creek community alone, and at least two others elsewhere in Morganton.
Investigators discovered the outstanding arrest warrant from Buncombe County and also learned that Farrant has been the focus of multiple similar complaints in other jurisdictions.
Farrant arrived for an appointment with another potential victim yesterday morning, but Officers were waiting there to take him into custody. He has a District Court date in Asheville coming up on June 10. Farrant also faces charges in Lincoln County for failure to perform work after being paid and in Iredell County for worthless checks.