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Troubleshooters: Consignment shop nightmare

READ MORE: Troubleshooters: Consignment shop nightmare
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A Wilmington consignment store recently changed hands, and it seems the old owner has left hundreds of customers high and dry. Much of the merchandise customers had consigned at Hand-Me-Downs on Kerr Avenue is missing, and so is the money the consigners were owed for merchandise that had already sold. The customers and the new owner have a mess on their hands, and the old owner is nowhere to be found. "I just cleaned out a closet, I took a couple jackets, and old jewelry box, some kind of costume jewelry, a good stack of stuff, it took a couple of trips to bring it in the store,” said customer Jennifer Kostel who was looking for a way to make a few extra bucks. She took her clothes and jewelry to hand-me-downs consignments on Kerr Avenue a couple of months ago, and recently returned to pick up the money for the items that had sold. That's when she was told her clothes were gone, and so was the money. "It makes me feel like I was ripped off, first and foremost. I feel like stuff was stolen from me" Julie Strickland bought the Hand-Me-Downs store earlier this month from the previous owner, Lorraine Meyer. She paid Meyer $25,000 to take over the business, only to inherit a huge mess. "Pretty much, I think she took people’s money, or their items, and just bounced and ran.” Strickland said Meyer was supposed to settle up with all of her existing customers whose items had already sold. Judging by the dozens of complaints Strickland has received since taking over, that didn't happen. Making matters worse, a lot of valuable merchandise is missing, and Strickland said Meyer deleted all the computer records showing what customers had brought in to sell. "Its hard to deal with her because, she's disconnected her phone number, she just pretty much fell off the face of the earth,” Strickland said. Meanwhile, Strickland is staying busy doing damage control with customers, who are out their merchandise and their money. Attorneys we spoked to say Strickland certainly has a civil case against Lorraine Meyer for breech of contract. In addition, the customers at hand-me-downs may be able to pursue this in the criminal areana, since the merchandise they entrusted to Meyer is nowhere to be found. Update: After this story aired, Lorraine Meyer's husband contacted our newsroom, saying she hadn't been able to settle up with her customers because of a computer glitch. He assured us checks would be going out the first week in March. We'll keep you posted.

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check in mail

today i got a check for 3795.00 from adamson marketing research in haverhill, masachusetts 01832. they want me to deposit this check in my account & do a survey. then they want me to write a check to send to a person of my choice. i have being in textile for 33 years. and my plant closed in june 2008. i could use a money. but i'm no fool.

WOW!!!

Sure sounds like this lady sure has a BUNCH of computer problems! It said last night on the news she didn't have inventory of the people's items,etc. because of a computer glitch or something and now she lost your stuff in the computer too! Sounds like a con-artist to me!

MAKES YOU FEEL GOOD

I HOPE THEY FIND AND LOCK HER UP FOR 1 YEAR PER EVERY THOUSAND DOLLARS SHE STOLE FROM THESE PEOPLE. IT MAKE ME SICK.

Lorraine Meyer a nightmare

Well I was stunned when I saw this on the news last night but not surprised. I have dealt with her also. What a crook. I had a hunch this lady was a scam. Over a year ago I wish I did something about it then. One of the items I consigned with her she said she "misplaced" could not find it. It was a designer suit, tags still on it and very nice.I went in and asked again about it but she said she is in the middle of changing our computer system over to a new program blah blah blah... I sure hope justice prevails.

Hand Me Downs

To Whom this may concern, I am Lorraine Meyer, the former owner of Hand Me Downs. I have not vanished nor am I about to shirk my responsibility to those consignors who have money coming to them from the time when I owned and operated Hand Me Downs. All customers who have money coming will receive a check and a listing of all inventory left in the store at the time the store was purchased. To Jennifer Kostel, I am truly sorry that you have run into the situation you experienced with the new owners. I had left them instructions to call my husband should anyone arrive at the store requesting a pay out from the time I owned the store. He has not received a single call from any customer since the store changed hands. Ms. Strickland's statement that she thinks I have taken peoples money and/or items and "just bounced and ran." is just not true. My residence and phone number are a matter of public record and very easily found with today's technology. With respect to the records missing... the only records that were removed were all sales records and this was done for our tax purposes. All inventory records still exist in the system along with customer confidential information. I know this to be true as this all exists on our backup information that was performed when the store changed hands. I would like to add that the new owners of the store never performed an inventory of the store's items. Without a verified inventory as of the store's sale date there is no real means of determining when "missing items" became missing. This significantly clouds the issue of who is responsible for a given missing item or items. I am very unclear about what part of the bargin I have not held up. With respect to criminal or civil matters, if any, my attorney will be handling this.

I never received a check

I am still waiting to see my money and it has been almost a year!!!!! I brought my items into the store at the end of October 2008 and the "owner transfer" was not for a few months after that! When I dropped everything off, I didn't take my own physical inventory. So at this point I can't even remember how much I had coming to me. I can speculate at least $100-150 though. Even though I had an appointment to drop it off, nothing was done at the time. I was told to come back and check. This is extremely ridiculous and I can't believe that I was taken advantage of in this way. Considering some of the items had some sentimental value and it took me years to want to consign them, it makes the whole situation even worse. I'm not sure who is telling the truth, but it definitely makes me weary to ever consign anywhere again. I just wonder how this store is even still in business. Will justice ever be served???? Jennifer Kostel

Mrs. Meyer, you say that you

Mrs. Meyer, you say that you had inventory records up to at least when your backup files were made. So when were those files made, and what was the date that the store changed hands? I'm also curious as to why you didn't perform a full inventory WITH the new owner; something that you could both sign off and agree on.

You are a

You are a Liar!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Where are my 4 numbered and signed church prints????

On January 14, 2009 Hand Me Downs had received a 27" by 29" brown framed double matted picture frame from me. The frame consisted of 4 signed and numbered church prints done in the Winston-Salem, NC area. They were beautiful prints and professionally framed. The value of these were $175.00. I called Hand Me Downs this morning after seeing the news last night and was told the item is on the computer BUT NOT IN THE STORE. In other words, stolen, taken and gone forever by someone. Lorraine do you have any idea where my prints are today since I left them in such good hands as Kathy said. By the way, you are not listed in the phone book.

I am Low Rain Mayer. I took

I am Low Rain Mayer. I took your money and am I am currently soaking up the sun in the Caribbean. Suckers!

Rip off store

and by the way L.M.... I left some things with another consign shop. When they could not find a dress I left with them , they gave me money for it.That is good business. To tell me you don't have record of an item is not good business and it is good you are not managing a store any longer. I feel bad for the person who left the church prints and did not get them back nor the money. It is a real cryin' shame