Lauderdale Co. construction business owner arrested on home repair fraud charges

Joel Lamar, 49
Joel Lamar, 49(LCSO)
Published: Sep. 14, 2023 at 3:12 PM CDT
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LAUDERDALE CO., Ala. (WAFF) - The owner of a construction company in Lauderdale County was arrested following a nearly year long investigation into the handling of his business.

In Dec. 2022, the Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigation Division opened an investigation into the Lamar Construction and its owner Joel Lamar. The investigation was opened to looking into the business dealing and actions concerning the business.

Multiple victims told officials that Lamar was accepting large amounts of money to construct residential dwellings, home renovations and other services but would only complete very little to know work as agreed upon.

In the initial case, the victim stated that after they had entered a written contract with Lamar, they obtained a construction loan and presented him with a cashier’s check for $61,500. The victim alleged that Lamar never began the construction.

In Jan. 2023, a felony warrant of arrest was issued for Lamar in that case for Theft of Property - 1st degree and negotiating a worthless instrument. A press release was issued seeking the public’s assistance in finding Lamar and requesting any other victims to come forward.

After the release, multiple people came forward with claims of similar complaints regarding Lamar. The complaints spanned over several counties in northern Alabama and Southern Tennessee. Officials then determined that Lamar had fled from the area.

As the investigation continued, another felony warrant of arrest was issued for Lamar for Theft of Property - 1st degree. It was alleged that Lamar accepted $103,930 to perform a construction and did not do any work. Many other cases are under investigation for similar actions.

Lamar was found in Huntsville, AL on Sept. 12 and was transported to the Lauderdale County Detention Center on Sept. 13 where he was booked and is being held without bond.

The Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Office asks that if you have been a victim of Lamar or Lamar Construction, please contact the Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigation Division at (256)760-5772 or file a report with your local law enforcement agency.

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