Target 11 looks into contractor accused of not finishing home-renovation projects

Target 11 looks into contractor accused of not finishing home-renovation projects

RICHLAND TOWNSHIP, Pa. — Jason and Jen Watenpool reached out to Target 11 after they said they ran into problems with a local contractor. Watenpool’s hired Anthony Ficarri to build an addition on to their home in Richland Township, but they said Ficarri never finished the job and did shoddy work.

Target 11 investigator Rick Earle reached out to Ficarri by phone and Ficarri denied the allegations. Earle later spoke with Ficarri while he was working on a home in Evans City, Butler County.

Ficarri told Earle he always finished the work he was paid to do and he said he never cut corners.

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“What I do, sir, is there’s not one thing I don’t get a permit and an inspection. Every job you are talking about, I can provide you with the inspections,” Ficarri said.

The Watenpool’s said the contractors left a gaping hole in the living room ceiling, loose fixtures on the bathroom tub and uneven flooring. They said they paid Ficarri more than $100,000, and that Ficarri just stopped showing up, then returned a month later. They told him he was no longer welcome.

“I just told him that he betrayed our trust and he’s not welcome here and he was acting confused as if he didn’t know there was anything wrong,” Jason Watenpool said.

The Watenpools said the township won’t give them an occupancy permit because inspectors found a two-page list of problems. They said the township is threatening to fine them if they don’t fix the problems. The Watenpools said they are in the process of trying to correct the issues, but it will take at least $95,000. The township manager told Target 11 they will work with the Watenpools and as of right now have no plans to fine them.

Target 11 also spoke with several other customers who claim Ficarri either didn't finish projects or failed to provide items.

Bob Metzinger, who also lives in Richland Township, said he paid more than $200,000 for an addition and it was never completed.

“When I’ve got a contract for $130,000, and I’ve got $265,000 in it, it was just, like, ‘Hey forget it,'” Metzinger said.

We also talked to two customers who filed civil suits against Ficarri. One said she paid nearly $10,000 for cabinets that she never received. Another said she paid for a bathroom remodeling job that wasn’t finished. Ficarri did repay her nearly $8,000.

The Watenpools also said they met with a detective from the Allegheny County District Attorney’s Office in October, but no criminal charges have been filed in any of the cases.

A spokesman for District Attorney Stephen Zappala released this statement to Target 11.

District Attorney Zappala has made a significant commitment to holding contractors criminally accountable when they engage in fraud and theft, especially when the victims are elderly. While I can’t discuss specifics, the review of this individual’s business practices is active and ongoing.
Mike Manko, spokesman for District Attorney Stephen Zappala