Last night we told you about a local weight loss franchise that closed without warning. Turns out it is not the only branch in the region to abruptly shut down. A branch in Jacksonville also closed this past week. Clients were referred there after the nearby New Bern branch closed a few months ago. Clients of the Wilmington location say the doors have been locked for a week. Since we broke the story yesterday, a number of people called and e-mailed the newsroom to share their stories. Most said they are now out hundreds of dollars. Yesterday, we found files with clients' personal information and social security numbers tossed in the dumpster outside. Attorney David Ennis said, "What was done was done improperly, it was done illegally and I certainly think people should take measures to make sure this is remedied for them, and that it sends a message to the public or to private business owners." Ennis says he is helping people in the area figure out how to get their money back. We also found out from former employees today that the Wilmington branch was owned by Kelly Walsh of Rhode Island and at least two other partners from Nashville Tennessee. WWAY has been trying to contact all three business owners for the past two days. None have returned phone calls. Calls to the L.A. Weight Loss corporate office have also gone unreturned.
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