Johnston County HVAC contractor behind bars after being accused of taking money and not doing work

FOUR OAKS, N.C. (WTVD) -- A Johnston County HVAC repairman is in trouble with the law for taking on jobs but not doing the work.

Gregory Lee Hines of Four Oaks is in jail facing several charges of obtaining property under false pretenses and failure to work after being paid.

According to the warrants, several home and business owners hired Hines to work on their HVAC units and while he did do work for some, it wasn't finished and for some victims, after getting their money he didn't return to do the job.

The Johnston County Sheriff's Department says there are at least 10 victims and about $37,000 was obtained by Hines.

If you've been a victim of Hines', you can file a report with the police.

This is a good reminder before you hire a company, do your research.

First, check that the HVAC company you're using has the proper licensing and insurance required to perform the work. If you need major work done, get multiple written estimates. Also, watch out for scammers posing as legitimate companies, as those fraudsters will often use a similar name of a reputable company with a positive reputation.

If you ever have any questions, call the reputable company to make sure they're connected. If they claim a certain part needs repaired, asked to see it, and if you agree to let them replace it, ask for the broken part. When it comes to payment, don't pay 100% upfront and try to use a credit card so you have the most protection if something goes wrong.
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